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In vitro and in vivo activity of melflufen (J1) in lymphoma
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Immunology, Genetics and Pathology. (Gunilla Enblad)
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Sciences, Cancer Pharmacology and Computational Medicine.
Univ Uppsala Hosp, Dept Med Sci, Clin Pharmacol Sect, Uppsala, Sweden; Karolinska Inst, Dept Womens & Childrens Hlth, Childhood Canc Res Unit, Stockholm, Sweden.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Sciences, Cancer Pharmacology and Computational Medicine.
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2016 (English)In: BMC Cancer, ISSN 1471-2407, E-ISSN 1471-2407, Vol. 16, 263Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Melphalan has been used in the treatment of various hematologic malignancies for almost 60 years. Today it is part of standard therapy for multiple myeloma and also as part of myeloablative regimens in association with autologous allogenic stem cell transplantation. Melflufen (melphalan flufenamide ethyl ester, previously called J1) is an optimized derivative of melphalan providing targeted delivery of active metabolites to cells expressing aminopeptidases. The activity of melflufen has compared favorably with that of melphalan in a series of in vitro and in vivo experiments performed preferentially on different solid tumor models and multiple myeloma. Melflufen is currently being evaluated in a clinical phase I/II trial in relapsed or relapsed and refractory multiple myeloma.

Methods: Cytotoxicity of melflufen was assayed in lymphoma cell lines and in primary tumor cells with the Fluorometric Microculture Cytotoxicity Assay and cell cycle analyses was performed in two of the cell lines. Melflufen was also investigated in a xenograft model with subcutaneous lymphoma cells inoculated in mice.

Results: Melflufen showed activity with cytotoxic IC50-values in the submicromolar range (0.011-0.92 μM) in the cell lines, corresponding to a mean of 49-fold superiority (p < 0.001) in potency vs. melphalan. In the primary cultures melflufen yielded slightly lower IC50-values (2.7 nM to 0.55 μM) and an increased ratio vs. melphalan (range 13–455, average 108, p < 0.001). Treated cell lines exhibited a clear accumulation in the G2/M-phase of the cell cycle. Melflufen also showed significant activity and no, or minimal side effects in the xenografted animals.

Conclusion: This study confirms previous reports of a targeting related potency superiority of melflufen compared to that of melphalan. Melflufen was active in cell lines and primary cultures of lymphoma cells, as well as in a xenograft model in mice and appears to be a candidate for further evaluation in the treatment of this group of malignant diseases.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 16, 263
Keyword [en]
J1, Melflufen, Prodrug, Cancer therapeutics, Alkylating agents
National Category
Cancer and Oncology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-282281DOI: 10.1186/s12885-016-2299-9ISI: 000373330200001PubMedID: 27044263OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-282281DiVA: diva2:916828
Available from: 2016-04-05 Created: 2016-04-05 Last updated: 2017-11-30Bibliographically approved

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Delforoush, MaryamStrese, SaraLarsson, RolfEnblad, GunillaGullbo, Joachim

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