Suppression of Tumor Growth and Muscle Wasting in a Transgenic Mouse Model of Pancreatic Cancer by the Novel Histone Deacetylase Inhibitor AR-42

Sally E. Henderson, Li Yun Ding, Xiaokui Mo, Tanios Bekaii-Saab, Samuel K. Kulp, Ching Shih Chen, Po Hsien Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is the third leading cause of cancer death in the United States. This study was aimed at evaluating the efficacy of AR-42 (formerly OSU-HDAC42), a novel histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor currently in clinical trials, in suppressing tumor growth and/or cancer-induced muscle wasting in murine models of PDAC. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: The in vitro antiproliferative activity of AR-42 was evaluated in six human pancreatic cancer cell lines (AsPC-1, COLO-357, PANC-1, MiaPaCa-2, BxPC-3, SW1990). AsPC-1 subcutaneous xenograft and transgenic KPfl/flC (LSL-KrasG12D;Trp53flox/flox;Pdx-1-Cre) mouse models of pancreatic cancer were used to evaluate the in vivo efficacy of AR-42 in suppressing tumor growth and/or muscle wasting. RESULTS: Growth suppression in AR-42–treated cells was observed in all six human pancreatic cancer cell lines with dose-dependent modulation of proliferation and apoptotic markers, which was associated with the hallmark features of HDAC inhibition, including p21 upregulation and histone H3 hyperacetylation. Oral administration of AR-42 at 50 mg/kg every other day resulted in suppression of tumor burden in the AsPC-1 xenograft and KPfl/flC models by 78% and 55%, respectively, at the end of treatment. Tumor suppression was associated with HDAC inhibition, increased apoptosis, and inhibition of proliferation. Additionally, AR-42 as a single agent preserved muscle size and increased grip strength in KPfl/flC mice. Finally, the combination of AR-42 and gemcitabine in transgenic mice demonstrated a significant increase in survival than either agent alone. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that AR-42 represents a therapeutically promising strategy for the treatment of pancreatic cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)765-774
Number of pages10
JournalNeoplasia (United States)
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research

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