Cancer Res 2018 12 12;78(23):6680-6690. Epub 2018 Sep 12.
Department of Cancer Biology and Genetics and Comprehensive Cancer Center, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio.
: Muscle wasting is a feature of the cachexia syndrome, which contributes significantly to the mortality of patients with cancer. We have previously demonstrated that miR-21 is secreted through extracellular vesicles (EV) by lung and pancreatic cancer cells and promotes JNK-dependent cell death through its binding to the TLR7 receptor in murine myoblasts. Here, we evaluate the ability of IMO-8503, a TLR7, 8, and 9 antagonist, to inhibit cancer-induced cachexia. Using EVs isolated from lung and pancreatic cancer cells and from patient plasma samples, we demonstrate that IMO-8503 inhibits cell death induced by circulating miRNAs with no significant toxicity. Intraperitoneal administration of the antagonist in a murine model for Lewis lung carcinoma (LLC-induced cachexia) strongly impaired several cachexia-related features, such as the expression of Pax7 as well as caspase-3 and PARP cleavage in skeletal muscles, and significantly prevented the loss of lean mass in tumor-bearing mice. IMO-8503 also impaired circulating miRNA-induced cell death in human primary myoblasts. Taken together, our findings strongly indicate that IMO-8503 serves as a potential therapy for the treatment of cancer cachexia. SIGNIFICANCE: Cancer-associated cachexia is a significant problem for patients with cancer that remain poorly understood, understudied, and inadequately treated; these findings report a potential new therapeutic for the treatment of TLR7-mediated cancer cachexia.