Figure S1: Discovery and validation datasets used in the study; Figure S2: Sensitivity of BRAFMT and WT CRC cells to acute ER stress induction; Figure S3: Sensitivity of BRAFMT and WT CRC cells to ACY-1215 and carfilzomib; Figure S4: Effect of combined ACY-1215 and carfilzomib on survival of BRAFMT and WT CRC cells; Figure S5: Effect of combined ACY-1215 and carfilzomib on accumulation of ubiquitinated proteins; Figure S6: Tolerability of combined ACY-1215/carfilzomib treatment in BALB/c nude mice
ARTICLE ABSTRACTBRAFV600E mutations occur in ∼10% of colorectal cancer cases, are associated with poor survival, and have limited responses to BRAF/MEK inhibition with or without EGFR inhibition. There is an unmet need to understand the biology of poor prognostic BRAFMT colorectal cancer. We have used differential gene expression and pathway analyses of untreated stage II and stage III BRAFMT (discovery set: n = 31; validation set: n = 26) colorectal cancer, and an siRNA screen to characterize the biology underpinning the BRAFMT subgroup with poorest outcome. These analyses identified the unfolded protein response (UPR) as a novel and druggable pathway associated with the BRAFMT colorectal cancer subgroup with poorest outcome. We also found that oncogenic BRAF drives endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and UPR pathway activation through MEK/ERK. Furthermore, inhibition of GRP78, the master regulator of the UPR, using siRNA or small molecule inhibition, resulted in acute ER stress and apoptosis, in particular in BRAFMT colorectal cancer cells. In addition, dual targeting of protein degradation using combined Carfilzomib (proteasome inhibitor) and ACY-1215 (HDAC6-selective inhibitor) treatment resulted in marked accumulation of protein aggregates, acute ER stress, apoptosis, and therapeutic efficacy in BRAFMT in vitro and xenograft models. Mechanistically, we found that the apoptosis following combined Carfilzomib/ACY-1215 treatment is mediated through increased CHOP expression. Taken together, our findings indicate that oncogenic BRAF induces chronic ER stress and that inducers of acute ER stress could be a novel treatment strategy for poor prognostic BRAFMT colorectal cancer. Mol Cancer Ther; 17(6); 1280–90. ©2018 AACR.