American Association for Cancer Research
15357163mct210393-sup-265057_3_supp_7494441_r1ygdn.docx (2.77 MB)

Supplementary Data from The Mitochondrial Disruptor Devimistat (CPI-613) Synergizes with Genotoxic Anticancer Drugs in Colorectal Cancer Therapy in a Bim-Dependent Manner

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-04-03, 18:43 authored by Carina Arnold, Philipp Demuth, Nina Seiwert, Simon Wittmann, Kerstin Boengler, Birgit Rasenberger, Markus Christmann, Magdalena Huber, Thomas Brunner, Michael Linnebacher, Jörg Fahrer

contains supplementary figures and tables


Wilhelm Sander Foundation

German Research Foundation




Colorectal cancer is one of the most frequent tumor entities, with an increasing incidence and mortality in younger adults in Europe and the United States. Five-year survival rates for advanced colorectal cancer are still low, highlighting the need for novel targets in colorectal cancer therapy. Here, we investigated the therapeutic potential of the compound devimistat (CPI-613) that targets altered mitochondrial cancer cell metabolism and its synergism with the antineoplastic drugs 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) and irinotecan (IT) in colorectal cancer. Devimistat exerted a comparable cytotoxicity in a panel of established colorectal cancer cell lines and patient-derived short-term cultures independent of their genetic and epigenetic status, whereas human colonic epithelial cells were more resistant, indicating tumor selectivity. These findings were corroborated in intestinal organoid and tumoroid models. Mechanistically, devimistat disrupted mitochondrial membrane potential and severely impaired mitochondrial respiration, resulting in colorectal cancer cell death induction independent of p53. Combination treatment of devimistat with 5-FU or IT demonstrated synergistic cell killing in colorectal cancer cells as shown by Combenefit modeling and Chou–Talalay analysis. Increased cell death induction was revealed as a major mechanism involving downregulation of antiapoptotic genes and accumulation of proapoptotic Bim, which was confirmed by its genetic knockdown. In human colorectal cancer xenograft mouse models, devimistat showed antitumor activity and synergized with IT, resulting in prolonged survival and enhanced therapeutic efficacy. In human tumor xenografts, devimistat prevented IT-triggered p53 stabilization and caused synergistic Bim induction. Taken together, our study revealed devimistat as a promising candidate in colorectal cancer therapy by synergizing with established antineoplastic drugs in vitro and in vivo.