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Current Molecular Pharmacology


ISSN (Print): 1874-4672
ISSN (Online): 1874-4702

Research Article

Characterization of Imatinib Resistant CML Leukemic Stem/Initiating Cells and Their Sensitivity to CBP/Catenin Antagonists

Author(s): Yi Zhao, Kaijin Wu, Yongfeng Wu, Elizabeth Melendez, Goar Smbatyan, David Massiello and Michael Kahn*

Volume 11, Issue 2, 2018

Page: [113 - 121] Pages: 9

DOI: 10.2174/1874467210666170919155739

Price: $65


Background and Objective: The development of the tyrosine kinase inhibitor Imatinib (IM) represents a milestone in CML (Chronic Myeloid Leukemia) treatment. However, it is not curative and patients develop IM resistance. IM resistance has been previously correlated with the emergence of drug-resistant LIC/LSC (Leukemia Initiating Cell/Leukemia Stem Cell) and increased nuclear catenin levels and enhanced Wnt signaling. It has been demonstrated previously that drug resistant CML LIC/LSC can be safely eliminated both in vitro and in vivo via disruption of the CBP/catenin interaction, utilizing the highly biochemically selective small molecule CBP/catenin antagonist ICG- 001.

Methods: Here, we utilized an in vitro IM selection of primary CML patients' samples to identify drug-resistant LIC/LSC populations. In this report, we characterized the drug-resistant CML LIC/LSC population using FACS, Smartchip qPCR and colony assays to analyze cell surface markers, transcriptomics and function.

Results: As opposed to previous characterization of the CML leukemic stem cell population as being either CD34+CD38- or CD34+CD38+, the in vitro selected Imatinib resistant (IM-R) CML LSC population was consistently CD34-CD38-. In Long-Term Culture Initiating Cell assay (LTC-IC, a surrogate assay for long term repopulating stem cells), our results suggest that the CBP/catenin antagonist ICG- 001 sensitizes LIC/LSC to IM treatment by forced differentiative elimination of the CML LIC/LSC population.

Conclusion: In vitro selected IM resistant cells are negative for both CD34 and CD38 by FACS analysis. These cells acquire CD34/CD38 expression after co-culture with stromal cells. CBP/catenin antagonist ICG-001 facilitates IM function in eliminating these cells.

Keywords: Leukemia Stem Cell/Leukemia Initiating Cell (LIC/LSC), CBP/catenin antagonist, Wnt, ICG-001, Imatinib (IM).

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