American Association for Cancer Research
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HS746T_2 from Microtubule Engagement with Taxane Is Altered in Taxane-Resistant Gastric Cancer

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posted on 2023-03-31, 22:13 authored by Giuseppe Galletti, Chao Zhang, Ada Gjyrezi, Kyle Cleveland, Jiaren Zhang, Sarah Powell, Prashant V. Thakkar, Doron Betel, Manish A. Shah, Paraskevi Giannakakou
HS746T_2 from Microtubule Engagement with Taxane Is Altered in Taxane-Resistant Gastric Cancer







Although taxane-based therapy is standard treatment for advanced gastric cancer, a majority of patients exhibit intrinsic resistance to taxanes. Here, we aim to identify the molecular basis of taxane resistance in gastric cancer. We performed a post hoc analysis of the TAX-325 clinical trial and molecular interrogation of gastric cancer cell lines to assess the benefit of docetaxel in diffuse (DIF-GC) versus intestinal (INT-GC) gastric cancer. We assessed drug-induced microtubule stabilization in gastric cancer cells and in biopsies of patients with gastric cancer treated with taxanes. We performed transcriptome analysis in taxane-treated gastric cancer cells and patients to identify molecular drivers of taxane resistance. Patients with DIF-GC did not derive a clinical benefit from taxane treatment suggesting intrinsic taxane resistance. DIF-GC cell lines displayed intrinsic resistance specific to taxanes because of impaired drug-induced microtubule stabilization, in the absence of tubulin mutations or decreased drug accumulation. Using taxane-treated gastric cancer patient biopsies, we demonstrated that absence of drug–target engagement was correlated with clinical taxane resistance. Taxane-sensitive cell lines displayed faster microtubule dynamics at baseline, implicating proteins that regulate cytoskeletal dynamics in intrinsic taxane resistance. Differential gene expression analysis of untreated and docetaxel-treated gastric cancer lines and patient samples identified kinesins to be associated with taxane sensitivity in vitro and in patient samples. Our data reveal that taxane resistance is more prevalent in patients with DIF-GC, support assessment of drug–target engagement as an early read-out of taxane clinical efficacy, and encourage the investigation of kinesins and other microtubule-associated proteins as potentially targetable mediators of taxane resistance in gastric cancer.

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