Many different aberrations in the Anaplastic Lymphoma Kinase (ALK) were found to be oncogenic drivers in several cancers including neuroblastoma (NB), therefore ALK is now considered a critical player in NB oncogenesis and a promising therapeutic target. The ALK-inhibitor crizotinib has a limited activity against the various ALK mutations identified in NB patients. We tested: the activity of the novel ALK-inhibitor X-396 administered alone or in combination with Targeted Liposomes carrying ALK-siRNAs (TL[ALK-siRNA]) that are active irrespective of ALK gene mutational status; the pharmacokinetic profiles and the biodistribution of X-396; the efficacy of X-396 versus crizotinib treatment in NB xenografts; whether the combination of X-396 with the TL[ALK-siRNA] could promote long-term survival in NB mouse models. X-396 revealed good bioavailability, moderate half-life, high mean plasma and tumor concentrations. X-396 was more effective than crizotinib in inhibiting in vitro cell proliferation of NB cells and in reducing tumor volume in subcutaneous NB models in a dose-dependent manner. In orthotopic NB xenografts, X-396 significantly increased life span independently of the ALK mutation status. In combination studies, all effects were significantly improved in the mice treated with TL[ALK-siRNA] and X-396 compared to mice receiving the single agents. Our findings provide a rational basis to design innovative molecular-based treatment combinations for clinical application in ALK-driven NB tumors.
Di Paolo, D., Yang, D., Pastorino, F., Emionite, L., Cilli, M., Daga, A., … Perri, P. (2015). New therapeutic strategies in neuroblastoma: Combined targeting of a novel tyrosine kinase inhibitor and liposomal siRNAs against ALK. Oncotarget, 6(30), 28774–28789. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.4342