Aurora A kinase plays an essential role in the proper assembly and function of the mitotic spindle, as its perturbation causes defects in centrosome separation, spindle pole organization, and chromosome congression. Moreover, Aurora A disruption leads to cell death via a mechanism that involves aneuploidy generation. However, the link between the immediate functional consequences of Aurora A inhibition and the development of aneuploidy is not clearly defined. In this study, we delineate the sequence of events that lead to aneuploidy following Aurora A inhibition using MLN8054, a selective Aurora A small-molecule inhibitor. Human tumor cells treated with MLN8054 show a high incidence of abnormal mitotic spindles, often with unseparated centrosomes. Although these spindle defects result in mitotic delays, cells ultimately divide at a frequency near that of untreated cells. We show that many of the spindles in the dividing cells are bipolar, although they lack centrosomes at one or more spindle poles. MLN8054-treated cells frequently show alignment defects during metaphase, lagging chromosomes in anaphase, and chromatin bridges during telophase. Consistent with the chromosome segregation defects, cells treated with MLN8054 develop aneuploidy over time. Taken together, these results suggest that Aurora A inhibition kills tumor cells through the development of deleterious aneuploidy.
Mitotic regulators exhibiting gain of function in tumor cells are considered useful cancer therapeutic targets for the development of small-molecule inhibitors. The human Aurora kinases are a family of such targets. In this study, from a panel of 105 potential small-molecule inhibitors, two compounds Tripolin A and Tripolin B, inhibited Aurora A kinase activity in vitro. In human cells however, only Tripolin A acted as an Aurora A inhibitor. We combined in vitro, in vivo single cell and in silico studies to demonstrate the biological action of Tripolin A, a non-ATP competitive inhibitor. Tripolin A reduced the localization of pAurora A on spindle microtubules (MTs), affected centrosome integrity, spindle formation and length, as well as MT dynamics in interphase, consistent with Aurora A inhibition by RNAi or other specific inhibitors, such as MLN8054 or MLN8237. Interestingly, Tripolin A affected the gradient distribution towards the chromosomes, but not the MT binding of HURP (Hepatoma Up-Regulated Protein), a MT-associated protein (MAP) and substrate of the Aurora A kinase. Therefore Tripolin A reveals a new way of regulating mitotic MT stabilizers through Aurora A phosphorylation. Tripolin A is predicted to bind Aurora A similarly but not identical to MLN8054, therefore it could be used to dissect pathways orchestrated by Aurora kinases as well as a scaffold for further inhibitor development.
To gain a greater understanding of the potential of the Aurora kinase A inhibitor MLN8237 in the treatment of pediatric malignancies.
The activity of MLN8237 was evaluated against 28 neuroblastoma and Ewing sarcoma cell lines, and its in vivo efficacy was studied over a range of doses against 12 pediatric tumor xenograft models. Pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamic, and genomic studies were undertaken.
In vitro neuroblastoma cell lines were generally more sensitive to MLN8237 than Ewing sarcoma lines. MLN8237 demonstrated significant activity in vivo against solid tumor models at the maximum tolerated dose (MTD); however, only 2 of 6 neuroblastoma models had objective responses at 0.25MTD. In contrast, MLN8237 induced objective responses at its MTD and at 0.5MTD in three ALL models and in two out of three at 0.25MTD. Pharmacokinetic studies at 0.5MTD demonstrated a Tmax of 0.5 h, Cmax of 24.8 μM, AUC(0–24) of 60.3 μM h, and 12 h trough level of 1.2 μM. Mitotic indices increased 6–12 h after MLN8237 administration. AURKA copy number variation was frequent in xenografts, and expression was highly correlated with copy number.
Objective responses were more frequent in tumors with decreased AURKA copy number (5/8) compared to those with increased gene copy number (2/14). This report confirms the significant activity against both solid tumor and ALL xenografts at the MTD, with a steep dose response. These data support clinical development of MLN8237 in childhood cancer. Because of the steep dose–response relationship, such studies should target achieving trough levels of 1 μM or higher for sustained periods of treatment.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00280-011-1618-8) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Preclinical testing; Developmental therapeutics; MLN8237; Pediatric cancer
The members of the Aurora kinase family play critical roles in the regulation of the cell cycle and mitotic spindle assembly and have been intensively investigated as potential targets for a new class of anti-cancer drugs. We describe a new highly potent and selective class of Aurora kinase inhibitors discovered using a phenotypic cellular screen. Optimized inhibitors display many of the hallmarks of Aurora inhibition including endoreduplication, polyploidy, and loss of cell viability in cancer cells. Structure-activity relationships with respect to kinome-wide selectivity and guided by an Aurora B co-crystal structure resulted in the identification of key selectivity determinants and discovery of a sub-series with selectivity towards Aurora A. A direct comparison of biochemical and cellular profile with respect to published Aurora inhibitors including VX-680, AZD1152, MLN8054, and a pyrimidine-based compound from Genentech demonstrates that compounds 1 and 3 will become valuable additional pharmacological probes of Aurora dependent functions.
The kinesin spindle protein (KSP) is essential for separation of spindle poles during mitosis. Its inhibition results in mitotic arrest. This phase I trial examined safety, tolerability, dose-limiting toxicity (DLT), maximum tolerated dose (MTD), pharmacokinetic parameters, and anti-tumor activity of MK-0731, a potent inhibitor of KSP.
In part 1, patients with advanced solid tumors received MK-0731 intravenously over 24 h every 21 days starting at 6 mg/m2, escalating until MTD was reached. In part 2, patients with taxane-resistant tumors received the MTD. Plasma samples were collected to analyze the pharmacokinetics of MK-0731. Tumor response was evaluated using Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors (RECIST) v1.0.
In part 1, 21 patients (median age 63 years) were treated with MK-0731 at doses ranging from 6 to 48 mg/m2/24 h for median four cycles. The dose-limiting toxicity was neutropenia and the MTD was 17 mg/m2/24 h. At the MTD, AUC (±SD) was 10.5 (±7.3) μM × hour, clearance (±SD) was 153 mL/min (±84), and t1/2 was 5.9 h. In part 2, 22 patients received the MTD and there were no DLTs. Although there were no objective tumor responses, four patients (with cervical, non-small cell lung, and ovarian cancers) had prolonged stable disease.
MK-0731 at the MTD of 17 mg/m2/day every 21 days in patients with solid tumors had few grade 3 and 4 toxicities with the major DLTs at higher doses being myelosuppression. Anti-tumor efficacy was suggested by the length of stable disease in selected patients with taxane-resistant tumors.
Kinesin spindle protein; Oncology; Neutropenia
Background A Phase I study to determine the maximum tolerated dose (MTD) and pharmacokinetics of afatinib (BIBW 2992), a novel irreversible ErbB Family Blocker, administered orally once daily in a 3-week-on/1-week-off dosing schedule. Methods Patients with advanced solid tumors received single-agent afatinib at 10, 20, 40, 55 or 65 mg/day. Safety, antitumor activity, pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamic modulation of biomarkers were assessed. Results: Forty-three patients were enrolled. Dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs) occurred in five patients in the dose escalation phase (1/8 at 40 mg/day; 1/6 at 55 mg/day; 3/6 at 65 mg/day). The MTD was established at 55 mg/day. In the expansion cohort at the MTD, 6 patients experienced a DLT in the first 28-day treatment period. The most frequent DLT was diarrhea. The most common adverse events were diarrhea, rash, nausea, vomiting and fatigue. Overall, the afatinib safety profile in a 3-week-on/1-week-off dose schedule was similar to that of our daily-continuous schedule. Afatinib displayed dose-dependent pharmacokinetics at doses up to and including 55 mg/day, with a terminal half-life suitable for once-daily dosing. Signs of clinical antitumor activity were observed. In biopsies taken from clinically normal forearm skin, afatinib caused a reduced proliferation rate, with a concomitant increase in differentiation of epidermal keratinocytes. Conclusion Afatinib in a 3-week-on/1-week-off schedule showed a good safety profile. The MTD was 55 mg/day, although excess DLTs in the expansion cohort indicated that the 40 mg/day dose would have an acceptable safety profile for future studies. Dose cohorts between 40 and 55 mg/day were not examined in this study.
Afatinib; Pharmacokinetics; EGFR; HER2
Histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors, such as vorinostat, decrease Aurora kinase activity by a variety of mechanisms. Vorinostat and MLN8237, a selective Aurora A kinase inhibitor, disrupt the spindle assembly and the mitotic checkpoint at different points, suggesting that the combination could have increased antitumor activity. The purpose of this study was to determine the cytotoxicity of vorinostat and MLN8237 in pediatric tumor cell lines.
Cell survival was measured after 72 h of drug treatment using a modified methyl tetrazolium assay. For drug combination experiments, cells were exposed to medium alone (controls), single drug alone, or to different concentrations of the combination of the two drugs, for a total of 36 concentration pairs per plate. The interaction of the drug combination was analyzed using the universal response surface approach.
The cells express the target of MLN8237, Aurora A. For each cell line, the single agent IC50 for MLN8237 and for vorinostat was in the clinically relevant range. Both drugs inhibited cell survival in a concentration-dependent fashion. At concentrations of MLN8237 exceeding approximately 1 μM, there was a paradoxical increase in viability signal in all three lines that may be explained by inhibition of Aurora B kinase. The combination of MLN8237 and vorinostat showed additive cytotoxicity in all three cell lines and nearly abrogated the paradoxical increase in survival noted at high single-agent MLN8237 concentrations.
MLN8237 and vorinostat are active in vitro against cancer cell lines. These results provide important preclinical support for the development of future clinical studies of MLN8237and vorinostat.
Vorinostat; Histone deacetylase inhibitor; MLN8237; Aurora kinase inhibitor; Cytotoxicity
To assess the maximum-tolerated dose (MTD), dose-limiting toxicity (DLT), safety, and tolerability of the 24-hour continuous intravenous (CIV) infusion of MK-0457, a novel pan-Aurora kinase inhibitor, in patients with advanced solid tumors and to determine the bioavailability of an oral dose of 100 mg MK-0457.
MK-0457 was administered as a 24-hour CIV infusion every 21 days. Dose escalation proceeded per toxicity criteria. A 100 mg oral dose was administered to 7 patients 48 hours prior to the CIV infusion dose of 64 mg/m2/hr.
Twenty-seven patients received a total of 86 infusions of MK-0457. Dose limiting toxicity at 96 mg/m2/hr included grade 4 neutropenia and grade 3 herpes zoster. The MTD was identified as 64 mg/m2/hr. The most common adverse events were nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and fatigue. Pharmacokinetic analyses revealed that CIV infusion MK-0457 had an estimated mean terminal half-life of approximately 6.6-10.2 hours and that end of infusion concentrations and mean AUCs were approximately dose proportional. The estimated mean oral bioavailability of MK-0457 was 7.9%. One patient with advanced ovarian cancer attained prolonged stable disease for 11 months.
MK-0457 was well tolerated in this schedule. Almost half the patients attained stable disease. Further development of this class of agents will likely occur in combination with other anti-cancer treatments.
Phase I; Aurora kinase; serine/threonine protein kinases; BCR-ABL mutations
ENMD-2076 is a unique orally bioavailable Aurora kinase and VEGFR inhibitor. The purpose of this phase 1 study of ENMD-2076 was to determine the MTD, pharmacokinetic, and pharmacodynamic profiles and preliminary antitumor activity.
Patients with refractory advanced solid malignancies were treated with ENMD-2076 orally with continuous once daily dosing. Doses from 60 to 200 mg/m2 were evaluated using a standard 3 (to 4) +3 design. Pharmacokinetic parameters were studied on days 1, 28, and 30 to 35 of cycle 1. Expanded MTD cohorts included patients with ovarian cancer, colorectal cancer, and refractory solid tumors.
A total of 67 patients (46 F, 21M; ages 30–76) entered the study. Dose levels of 60, 80, 120, 200, and 160 mg/m2 were evaluated. Two patients experienced grade 3 hypertension at 200 mg/m2, and additional grade 3 neutropenia events limited tolerability at this dose. An intermediate dose of 160 mg/m2 was determined to be the MTD. The most common drug-related adverse events included hypertension, nausea/vomiting, and fatigue. The pharmacokinetics of ENMD-2076 were characterized by a rapid absorption phase (Tmax 3–7.8 hours), a t1/2 of 27.3 to 38.3 hours after a single dose, and dose proportional exposure. Decreased plasma sVEGFR2 was observed posttreatment. Two patients with platinum refractory/resistant ovarian cancer had RECIST partial responses.
ENMD-2076 was well tolerated, had a linear pharmacokinetic profile, and showed promising antitumor activity, particularly in ovarian cancer. The recommended phase 2 dose of ENMD-2076 is 160 mg/m2 administered orally once daily with continuous dosing.
MLN8237 is a small molecule inhibitor of Aurora Kinase A (AURKA) that is currently in early phase clinical testing. AURKA plays a pivotal role in centrosome maturation and spindle formation during mitosis.
MLN8237 was tested against the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program (PPTP) in vitro panel at concentrations ranging from 1.0 nM to 10 μM and was tested against the PPTP in vivo panels at a dose of 20 mg/kg administered orally twice daily × 5 days. Treatment duration was 6 weeks for solid tumor xenografts and 3 weeks for ALL xenografts.
MLN8237 had a median IC50 of 61 nM against the PPTP in vitro panel. The ALL cell lines were more sensitive and the rhabdomyosarcoma cell lines less sensitive than the remaining PPTP cell lines. In vivo, MLN8237 induced significant differences in event-free survival (EFS) distributions compared to controls in 32/40 (80%) solid tumor models and all (6/6) ALL models. Maintained complete responses (CRs) were observed in 3 of 7 neuroblastoma xenografts, and all 6 evaluable ALL xenografts achieved CR (n=4) or maintained CR (n=2) status. Maintained CRs were observed among single xenografts in other panels, including the Wilms tumor, rhabdoid tumor, rhabdomyosarcoma, Ewing sarcoma, osteosarcoma, and medulloblastoma.
The in vivo activity observed against the neuroblastoma panel far exceeds that observed for standard agents evaluated against the panel by the PPTP. High levels of in vivo activity were also observed against the ALL xenograft panel. These data support expedited clinical development of MLN8237 in childhood cancer.
Preclinical Testing; Developmental Therapeutics; MLN8237
Oncogene-induced senescence can provide a protective mechanism against tumour progression. However, production of cytokines and growth factors by senescent cells may contribute to tumour development. Thus, it is unclear whether induction of senescence represents a viable therapeutic approach. Here, using a mouse model with orthotopic implantation of metastatic melanoma tumours taken from 19 patients, we observed that targeting aurora kinases with MLN8054/MLN8237 impaired mitosis, induced senescence and markedly blocked proliferation in patient tumour implants. Importantly, when a subset of tumour-bearing mice were monitored for tumour progression after pausing MLN8054 treatment, 50% of the tumours did not progress over a 12-month period. Mechanistic analyses revealed that inhibition of aurora kinases induced polyploidy and the ATM/Chk2 DNA damage response, which mediated senescence and a NF-κB-related, senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP). Blockade of IKKβ/NF-κB led to reversal of MLN8237-induced senescence and SASP. Results demonstrate that removal of senescent tumour cells by infiltrating myeloid cells is crucial for inhibition of tumour re-growth. Altogether, these data demonstrate that induction of senescence, coupled with immune surveillance, can limit melanoma growth.
aurora kinase; DNA damage; melanoma; NF-κB; senescence
This study was conducted to assess the safety, tolerability, pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of the intravenous pan-aurora kinase inhibitor PHA-739358, danusertib, in patients with advanced solid tumors.
In Part 1, patients received escalating doses of danusertib (24-h infusion every 14 days) without filgrastim (G-CSF). Febrile neutropenia was the dose-limiting toxicity without G-CSF. Further dose escalation was performed in part 2 with G-CSF. Blood samples were collected for danusertib pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. Skin biopsies were collected to assess histone H3 phosphorylation (pH3).
Fifty-six patients were treated, 40 in part 1 and 16 in part 2. Febrile neutropenia was the dose limiting toxicity in Part 1 without G-CSF. Most other adverse events were grade 1–2, occurring at doses ≥360 mg/m2 with similar incidence in parts 1 and 2. The MTD without G-CSF is 500 mg/m2. The recommended phase 2 dose (RP2D) in Part 2 with G-CSF is 750 mg/m2. Danusertib demonstrated dose-proportional pharmacokinetics in parts 1 and 2 with a median half-life of 18–26 hours. pH3 modulation in skin biopsies was observed at ≥500 mg/m2. One patient with refractory small cell lung cancer (1000 mg/m2 with G-CSF) had an objective response lasting 23 weeks. One patient with refractory ovarian cancer had 27% tumor regression and 30% CA125 decline.
Danusertib was well tolerated with target inhibition in skin at ≥500 mg/m2. Preliminary evidence of anti-tumor activity, including a PR and several occurrences of prolonged stable disease (SD), was seen across a variety of advanced refractory cancers. Phase II studies are ongoing.
Danusertib; PHA-739358; Aurora Kinase Inhibitor; phase I trial; solid tumors
BMS-690514 is a novel oral tyrosine kinase inhibitor of ErbB and vascular endothelial growth factor receptor. This open-label phase I dose-escalation study (ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00516451) aimed to assess the safety, preliminary efficacy, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamics of BMS-690514 in Japanese patients with advanced or metastatic solid tumors.
Patients with advanced or metastatic solid tumors received oral BMS-690514 once daily continuously until disease progression or intolerable toxicity occurred. Dose-limiting toxicity (DLT) was evaluated from the first dose to Day 29. Dose levels at 100 and 200 mg were investigated. Assessments included adverse events, tumor response, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, 2 [18F] fluoro-2-deoxyglucose positron-emitting tomography, and epidermal growth factor receptor and K-ras mutations.
BMS-690514 at the dose of 100 mg (n = 3) or 200 mg (n = 3) was administered once daily to totally nine patients and was well tolerated up to 200 mg. No treatment-related serious adverse events or DLTs were reported. Frequently observed treatment-related AEs were acne, diarrhea, dry skin, hypertension, stomatitis, blood fibrinogen increased, hemoglobin decreased, pruritus, and hypoalbuminemia. These were generally reported as Grade 1 and 2. Five of 9 patients (56 %) had stable disease. Plasma concentrations of BMS-690514 reached Cmax within 3 h and declined with an effective half-life of approximately 10 and 12 h at 100 and 200 mg, respectively.
Oral BMS-690514 was well tolerated in Japanese patients with advanced or metastatic solid tumors up to 200 mg.
BMS-690514; Tyrosine kinase inhibitor; Phase I trial; Solid tumor
Background This trial evaluated the safety, tolerability and maximum tolerated dose (MTD) of afatinib, a novel ErbB Family Blocker. Methods In this open-label, dose-escalation Phase I study, afatinib was administered continuously, orally, once-daily for 28 days to patients with advanced or metastatic solid tumors. Dose escalation was performed in a 3 + 3 design, with a starting dose of 10 mg/day (d); doses were doubled for each successive cohort until the MTD was defined. The MTD cohort was expanded to a total of 19 patients. Incidence and severity of adverse events (AEs), antitumor activity and pharmacokinetics were assessed. Results Thirty patients received at least one dose of afatinib. Twenty-nine patients were evaluable for response. Dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs) consisting of Grade 3 diarrhea were observed in two out of three patients treated at 60 mg/d. The MTD was determined at 40 mg/d. The most frequent treatment-related AEs were diarrhea and mucosal inflammation reported in 76.7 % and 43.3 % of patients respectively. Five patients had stable disease with a median progression-free survival of 111 days. No objective responses occurred. Pharmacokinetic data showed no deviation from dose-proportionality and steady-state was reached on Day 8 at the latest. Conclusions Afatinib was well tolerated with manageable side effects when administered once-daily, continuously at a dose of 40 mg.
Afatinib; Phase I; ErbB Family Blocker; Dose escalation; Irreversible tyrosine kinase inhibitor
To determine the maximum tolerated dose (MTD), toxicities, and pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic profile of the heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90) inhibitor PF-04929113 (SNX-5422) in patients with advanced solid tumors and lymphomas.
This was a single institution, phase I, dose-escalation study of PF-04929113 dosed twice-weekly. Endpoints included determination of dose-limiting toxicities (DLT), MTD, the safety profile of PF-04929113, pharmacodynamic assessment of PF-04929113 on Hsp70 induction, pharmacokinetic (PK) analysis of PF 04928473 (SNX-2112) and its prodrug PF-04929113 and assessment of response.
Thirty three patients with advanced malignancies were treated. Dose escalation was continued up to 177 mg/m2 administered orally twice a week. One DLT (non-septic arthritis) was noted. No grade 4 adverse events (AEs) were seen; grade 3 AEs included diarrhea (9%), non-septic arthritis (3%), AST elevation (3%) and thrombocytopenia (3%). No objective responses were seen in 32 evaluable patients. Fifteen patients (47%) had stable disease; 17 patients (53%) had progressive disease. PK data revealed rapid absorption, hepatic and extra-hepatic clearance, extensive tissue binding and almost linear pharmacokinetics of the active drug PF 04928473. PD studies confirmed inhibition of Hsp90 and a linear correlation between PK parameters and Hsp70 induction.
PF-04929113 administered orally twice weekly is well tolerated and inhibits its intended target Hsp90. No objective responses were seen but long lasting stabilizations were obtained. Although no clinically significant drug-related ocular toxicity was seen in this study the development of PF-04929113 has been discontinued due to ocular toxicity seen in animal models and in a separate phase I study.
To determine the maximum tolerated dose (MTD), dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs), pharmacokinetics (PK), and pharmacodynamics (PD) of sorafenib, bevacizumab, and low-dose oral cyclophosphamide in children and young adults with recurrent/refractory solid tumors.
Patients and Methods
Sorafenib dose was escalated from 90 mg/m2 to 110 mg/m2 twice daily with fixed doses of bevacizumab at 5 mg/kg every 3 weeks and cyclophosphamide at 50 mg/m2 daily. Once sorafenib’s MTD was established, bevacizumab dose was escalated. Each course was 21 days. PK and PD studies were performed during the first course.
Nineteen patients (11 males; median age, 9.2 years) received a median of 4 courses (range, 1 to 23). DLTs during course 1 included grade 3 rash (2), increased lipase (1), anorexia (1), and thrombus (1). With an additional 71 courses of therapy, the most common toxicities ≥ grade 3 included neutropenia (9), lymphopenia (9), and rashes (4). Five of 17 evaluable patients had partial tumor responses, and 5 had disease stabilization (>2 courses). Median day 1 cyclophosphamide apparent oral clearance was 3.13 L/h/m2. Median day 1 sorafenib apparent oral clearance was 44 and 39 ml/min/m2 at the 2 dose levels evaluated, and steady-state concentrations ranged from1.64 to 4.8 mg/L. Inhibition of serum VEGFR2 was inversely correlated with sorafenib steady-state concentrations (p=0.019).
The recommended phase II doses are sorafenib, 90 mg/m2 twice daily; bevacizumab, 15 mg/kg q3 weeks; and cyclophosphamide, 50 mg/m2 once daily. This regimen is feasible with promising evidence of antitumor activity that warrants further investigation.
sorafenib; cyclophosphamide; pediatric; phase I; bevacizumab
Auroras (A and B) are oncogenic serine/threonine kinases that play key roles in the mitotic phase of the eukaryotic cell cycle. Analysis of the Leukemia Lymphoma Molecular Profiling Project (LLMPP) database indicates Aurora over-expression correlates with poor prognosis. A tissue microarray (TMA) composed of 20 paired mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) patients demonstrated >75% of patients had high levels Aurora expression. Aurora A and B were also found elevated in 13 aggressive B-NHL cell lines. MLN8237, an Aurora inhibitor induced G2/M arrest with polyploidy and abrogated Aurora A and histone-H3 phosphorylation. MLN8237 inhibited aggressive B-NHL cell proliferation at an IC50 of 10-50 nM and induced apoptosis in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Low dose combinations of MLN8237 + docetaxel enhanced apoptosis by ∼3-4-fold in cell culture compared to single agents respectively. A mouse xenograft model of MCL demonstrated that MLN8237 (10 or 30 mg/kg) or docetaxel (10 mg/kg) alone had modest anti-tumor activity. However, MLN8237 plus docetaxel demonstrated a statistically significant tumor growth inhibition and enhanced survival compared to single agent therapy. Together, our results suggest that MLN8237 plus docetaxel may represent a novel therapeutic strategy that could be evaluated in early phase trials in relapsed/refractory aggressive B-cell NHL.
non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL); Mantle cell lymphoma (MCL); Aurora A and B; Aurora Inhibitor; MLN8237; Docetaxel
To determine the toxicity profile, dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs), maximum-tolerated dose (MTD), pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamics of cediranib administered orally, once daily, continuously in children and adolescents with solid tumors.
Patients and Methods
Children and adolescents with refractory solid tumors, excluding primary brain tumors, were eligible. DLT at the starting dose of 12 mg/m2/d resulted in de-escalation to 8 mg/m2/d and subsequent re-escalation to 12 and 17 mg/m2/d. Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic studies were performed during cycle 1. Response was evaluated using WHO criteria.
Sixteen patients (median age, 15 years; range, 8 to 18 years) were evaluable for toxicity. DLTs (grade 3 nausea, vomiting, fatigue in one; hypertension and prolonged corrected QT interval in another) occurred in patients initially enrolled at 12 mg/m2/d. Subsequently, 8 mg/m2/d was well tolerated in three patients. An additional seven patients were enrolled at 12 mg/m2/d; one had DLT (grade 3 diarrhea). At 17 mg/m2/d, two of four patients had DLTs (grade 3 nausea; intolerable grade 2 fatigue). Non–dose-limiting toxicities included left ventricular dysfunction, elevated thyroid stimulating hormone, palmar-plantar erythrodysesthesia, weight loss, and headache. The MTD of cediranib was 12 mg/m2/d (adult fixed dose equivalent, 20 mg). At 12 mg/m2/d, the median area under the plasma concentration-time curve extrapolated to infinity (AUC0-∞) was 900 ng·h/mL, which is similar to adults receiving 20 mg. Objective responses were observed in patients with Ewing sarcoma, synovial sarcoma, and osteosarcoma.
The recommended monotherapy dose of cediranib for children with extracranial solid tumors is 12 mg/m2/d administered orally, once daily, continuously. A phase II study is in development.
A Phase I study to define toxicity and recommend a Phase II dose of the HSP90 inhibitor alvespimycin (17-DMAG; 17-dimethylaminoethylamino-17-demethoxygeldanamycin). Secondary endpoints included evaluation of pharmacokinetic profile, tumor response and definition of a biologically effective dose (BED).
Patients and Methods
Patients with advanced solid cancers were treated with weekly, intravenous (IV) 17-DMAG. An accelerated titration dose escalation design was used. The maximum tolerated dose (MTD) was the highest dose at which ≤ 1/6 patients experienced dose limiting toxicity (DLT). Dose de-escalation from the MTD was planned with mandatory, sequential tumor biopsies to determine a BED. Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic assays were validated prior to patient accrual.
Twenty five patients received 17-DMAG (range 2.5 to 106 mg/m2). At 106mg/m2 of 17-DMAG 2/4 patients experienced DLT, including one treatment related death. No DLT occurred at 80mg/m2. Common adverse events were gastrointestinal, liver function changes and ocular. AUC and Cmax increased proportionally with 17-DMAG doses ≤ 80mg/m2. In peripheral blood mononuclear cells significant (p <0.05) HSP72 induction was detected (≥ 20mg/m2) and sustained for 96 hours (≥ 40mg/m2). Plasma HSP72 levels were greatest in the two patients who experienced DLT. At 80mg/m2 client protein (CDK4, LCK) depletion was detected and tumor samples from 3/5 patients confirmed HSP90 inhibition. Clinical activity included complete response (castration refractory prostate cancer, CRPC 124 weeks), partial response (melanoma, 159 weeks) and stable disease (chondrosarcoma, CRPC and renal cancer for 28, 59 and 76 weeks respectively).
The recommended Phase II dose of 17-DMAG is 80mg/m2 weekly, IV.
Background ME-143, a second-generation tumor-specific NADH oxidase inhibitor, is broadly active against human cancers in vitro and in vivo. This first-in-human dose-escalation study evaluated the dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs), pharmacokinetics, safety, tolerability, and preliminary anti-tumor activity of ME-143 in patients with advanced solid tumors. Methods Patients with advanced solid tumors were treated in a 3 + 3 escalation design. ME-143 was administered via intravenous infusion on days 1, 8, and 15 of the first 28-day cycle, and weekly thereafter; the final cohort received twice-weekly treatment. Samples for pharmacokinetic analysis were collected during cycle 1. Treatment continued until disease progression or unacceptable toxicity. Results Eighteen patients were treated: 2.5 mg/kg (n = 3); 5 mg/kg (n = 3); 10 mg/kg (n = 3); 20 mg/kg (n = 6); 20 mg/kg twice-weekly (n = 3). There were no DLTs observed. Nearly all treatment-related toxicities were grade 1/2, specifically (all grades) nausea (22 %) and fatigue (17 %). Two patients experienced infusion reactions at the 20 mg/kg dose level, one of which was grade 4. Stable disease was documented in three patients with colorectal cancer, cholangiocarcinoma, and anal cancer. Pharmacokinetic exposures were linear and dose-dependent, with a half-life of approximately 5 h. Conclusions ME-143 was well-tolerated when administered intravenously at the maximally administered/recommended phase 2 dose of 20 mg/kg once weekly to patients with advanced solid tumors. Though limited clinical activity was observed with monotherapy, inhibitors of tumor-specific NADH oxidase such as ME-143 may derive their greatest benefit in combination with cytotoxic chemotherapy.
ME-143; tNOX; Dose escalation; Isoflavone; Apoptosis
SF1126 is a peptidic pro-drug inhibitor of pan-PI3K/mTORC. A first-in-human study evaluated safety, dose limiting toxicities (DLT), maximum tolerated dose (MTD), pharmacokinetics (PK), pharmacodynamics (PD) and efficacy of SF1126, in patients with advanced solid and B-cell malignancies.
Patients and methods
SF1126 was administered IV days 1 and 4, weekly in 28 day-cycles. Dose escalation utilised modified Fibonacci 3+3. Samples to monitor PK and PD were obtained.
Forty four patients were treated at 9 dose levels (90–1110 mg/m2/day). Most toxicity was grade 1 and 2 with a single DLT at180 mg/m2 (diarrhoea). Exposure measured by peak concentration (Cmax) and area under the time-concentration curve (AUC0-t) was dose proportional. Stable disease (SD) was the best response in 19 of 33 (58%) evaluable patients. MTD was not reached but the maximum administered dose (MAD) was 1110 mg/m2. The protocol was amended to enrol patients with CD20+ B-cell malignancies at 1110 mg/m2. A CLL patient who progressed on rituximab [R] achieved SD after 2 months on SF1126 alone but in combination with R achieved a 55% decrease in absolute lymphocyte count and a lymph node response. PD studies of CLL cells demonstrated SF1126 reduced p-AKT and increased apoptosis indicating inhibition of activated PI3K signalling.
SF1126 is well tolerated with SD as the best response in patients with advanced malignancies.
PI3K/mTORC pathway; SF1126; Pharmacokinetics; Pharmacodynamics; Refractory solid tumours; B-cell malignancies
PF299804 is a potent, orally available, irreversible inhibitor of tyrosine kinase human epidermal growth factor receptors (HER) 1 (EGFR), HER2, and HER4. This first-in-human study investigated the safety, tolerability, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamics of PF299804 in patients with advanced solid malignancies.
PF299804 was administered once daily continuously (schedule A), and intermittently (schedule B). Dose escalation proceeded until intolerable toxicities occurred. Skin biopsies were taken pre-dose and after 14 days of treatment, to establish a pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic relationship. Tumor response was measured once every 2 cycles. Efficacy was correlated with tumor genotypes in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients.
121 patients were included (111 in schedule A, 10 in schedule B). The maximum tolerated dose (MTD) was 45 mg/day. Dose-limiting toxicities included stomatitis and skin toxicities. Most adverse events were mild and comprised skin toxicities, fatigue, and gastrointestinal side-effects including diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting. Pharmacokinetic analyses revealed dose-dependent increases in PF299804 exposure associated with target inhibition in skin biopsy samples. Fifty-seven patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) were treated in this study. Four patients, all previously treated with gefitinib or erlotinib (2 with exon 19 deletions, 1 with exon 20 insertion, 1 mutational status unknown), had a partial response to PF299804.
The MTD of PF299804 is 45 mg/day. Both continuous and intermittent treatment schedules were well tolerated, and encouraging signs of antitumor activity were observed in gefitinib/erlotinib treated NSCLC patients.
Phase I clinical trial; Non-small cell lung cancer; epidermal growth factor receptor; mutation; kinase inhibitor
Sunitinib is a multitargeted, oral tyrosine kinase inhibitor with antitumour and antiangiogenic activity. We investigated the safety and pharmacokinetics of sunitinib in combination with irinotecan in patients with advanced, refractory solid tumours.
Sunitinib was initially administered once daily at 37.5 mg per day on days 1–14 of a 21-day cycle, in which irinotecan 250 mg m−2 was given on day 1. In a second cohort, the sunitinib dose was reduced to 25 mg per day. Blood samples were collected for pharmacokinetic studies.
In the sunitinib 37.5 mg per day cohort, 3 out of 10 evaluable patients had objective responses, but dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs) of neutropenia, pneumococcal sepsis, and fatigue were observed. There were no DLTs in the sunitinib 25 mg per day cohort. Paired observations of pharmacokinetic parameter values of sunitinib and irinotecan alone vs the combination did not reveal significant drug–drug interactions. The maximum tolerated dose was defined as sunitinib 25 mg per day (days 1–14) with irinotecan 250 mg m−2 (day 1), but no activity was observed at this dose.
Although a higher sunitinib dose of 37.5 mg per day (days 1–14) with irinotecan showed preliminary evidence of antitumour activity, this dose was poorly tolerated. Therefore, this particular combination will not be pursued for further studies.
sunitinib; irinotecan; combination; advanced solid tumours; pharmacokinetics
TAS-102 consists of α, α, α-trifluorothymidine (TFT) and an inhibitor of thymidine phosphorylase (TPI). We conducted a dose-escalation phase I study in Japanese patients with advanced solid tumours.
TAS-102 was administered twice daily on days 1–5 and days 8–12 in a 28-day cycle to patients with solid tumours refractory to standard chemotherapy, to determine its maximum tolerated dose (MTD), dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs), and pharmacokinetics (PKs). MTD was evaluated in cycle 1.
Safety and PKs were evaluated in 21 patients treated with TAS-102 at 30, 40, 50, 60, or 70 mg m−2 per day. DLTs, such as grade 4 leucopenia, grade 4 neutropenia, and grade 4 thrombocytopenia, were observed in two patients at doses of 30 and 70 mg m−2. α, α, α-trifluorothymidine and TPI exposures increased dose dependently, and the percentage of decrease in neutrophil count and TFT exposure were significantly correlated. The disease control rate was 50.0% with a median progression-free survival of 2.4 months in 18 colorectal cancer patients. The dose of TAS-102 was not increased above 70 mg m−2 per day because of the increased tendency for grade 3 and 4 neutropenia, and 70 mg m−2 per day was the recommended dose for phase II studies.
TAS-102 at 70 mg m−2 per day was tolerated in Japanese patients with advanced solid tumours. Phase II studies are ongoing in patients with colorectal cancer.
phase I study; pharmacokinetics; TAS-102; TFT; TPI
Background Dacomitinib (PF-00299804) is an oral, irreversible, small molecule inhibitor of human epidermal growth factor receptor-1, -2, and -4 tyrosine kinases. Methods This phase I, open-label, dose-escalation study (clinicaltrials.gov: NCT00783328) primarily evaluated the safety and tolerability of dacomitinib by dose-limiting toxicity (DLT), and determined the clinically recommended phase II dose (RP2D) in Japanese patients with advanced solid tumors. Dacomitinib was administered orally at three dose levels (15, 30, or 45 mg once daily [QD]). Patients initially received a single dose, and after 9 days of follow-up, continuously QD in 21-day cycles. Endpoints included pharmacokinetics (PK) and antitumor activity. Results Thirteen patients were assigned to the three dose levels (15 mg cohort: n = 3; 30 mg cohort: n = 3; 45 mg cohort: n = 7) according to a traditional ‘3 + 3’ design. None of the treated patients experienced a DLT. Toxicities were manageable and similar in type to those observed in other studies. PK concentration parameters increased with dose over the range evaluated, with no evidence of accumulation over time. Of 13 evaluable patients, one with NSCLC (adenocarcinoma) had a partial response and nine patients had stable disease. Conclusions Dacomitinib 45 mg QD was defined as the RP2D and demonstrated preliminary activity in Japanese patients with advanced solid tumors.
Dacomitinib; PF-00299804; Epidermal growth factor receptor; Tyrosine kinase inhibitor; Japanese patients; Phase I