The adenosine triphosphate binding-site-directed agent STI571 and the tyrphostin adaphostin are undergoing evaluation as bcr/abl kinase inhibitors. The current study compared the effects of these agents on the survival of K562 cells, bcr/abl-transduced FDC-P1 cells, and myeloid progenitors from patients with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) compared with healthy donors. Treatment of K562 cells with 10 μM adaphostin resulted in decreased p210bcr/abl polypeptide levels in the first 6 hours, followed by caspase activation and accumulation of apoptotic cells in less than 12 hours. By 24 hours, 90% of the cells were apoptotic and unable to form colonies, In contrast, 20 μM STI571 caused rapid inhibition of bcr/abl autophosphorylation without p210bcr/abl degradation. Although this was followed by the inhibition of Stat5 phosphorylation and the down-regulation of Bcl-XL and Mcl-1, only 7% ± 3% and 25% ± 9% of cells were apoptotic at 16 and 24 hours, respectively. Instead, the cytotoxic effects of STI571 became more pronounced with prolonged exposure, with IC90 values greater than 20 μM and 1.0 ± 0.6 μM after 24 and 48 hours, respectively. Consistent with these results, 24-hour adaphostin exposure inhibited CML granulocyte colony-forming units (CFU-G) (median IC50, 12 μM) but not normal CFU-G (median IC50, greater than 20 μM), whereas 24-hour STI571 treatment had no effect on CML or normal CFU-G. Additional experiments revealed that STI571-resistant K562 cells remained sensitive to adaphostin. Moreover, the combination of STI571 + adaphostin induced more cytotoxicity in K562 cells and in CML CFU-G than either agent alone did. Collectively, these results identify adaphostin as a mechanistically distinct CML-selective agent that retains activity in STI571-resistant cell lines.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology