Purpose: BRCA2, FANCC, and FANCG gene mutations are present in a subset of pancreatic cancer. Defects in these genes could lead to hypersensitivity to interstrand cross-linkers in vivo and a more optimal treatment of pancreatic cancer patients based on the genetic profile of the tumor. Experimental Design: Two retrovirally complemented pancreatic cancer cell lines having defects in the Fanconi anemia pathway, PL11 (FANCC-mutated) and Hs766T (FANCG-mutated), as Well as several parental pancreatic cancer cell lines with or without mutations in the Fanconi anemia/BRCA2 pathway, were assayed for in vitro and in vivo sensitivities to various chemotherapeutic agents. Results: A distinct dichotomy of drug responses was observed. Fanconi anemia-defective cancer cells were hypersensitive to the cross-linking agents mitomycin C (MMC), cisplatin, chlorambucil, and melphalan but not to 5-fluorouracil, gemcitabine, doxorubicin, etoposide, vinblastine, or paclitaxel. Hypersensitivity to cross-linking agents was confirmed in vivo; FANCC-deficient xenografts of PL11 and BRCA2-deficient xenografts of CAPAN1 regressed on treatment with two different regimens of MMC whereas Fanconi anemia-proficient xenografts did not. The MMC response comprised cell cycle arrest/apoptosis, and necrosis. Xenografts of PL11 also regressed after a single dose of cyclophosphamide whereas xenografts of genetically complemented PL11FANCC did not. Conclusios: MMC or other cross-linking agents as a clinical therapy for pancreatic cancer patients with tumors harboring defects in the Fanconi anemia/BRCA2, pathway should be specifically investigated.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research