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Arsenic trioxide and all-trans-retinoic acid selectively exert synergistic cytotoxicity against FLT3-ITD AML cells via co-inhibition of FLT3 signaling pathways

FLT3-ITD mutations occur in approximately 30% of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and are associated with a poor outcome. Currently available FLT3 inhibitors have in vitro but limited clinical activity in FLT3-ITD AML. Reports have shown that an arsenic trioxide (ATO)/all-trans-retinoic acid (ATRA) combination improves prognosis in acute promyelocytic leukemia, especially with FLT3-ITD, and ATO or ATRA alone enhances apoptosis in FLT3-ITD AML cells treated with FLT3 inhibitors, providing a rationale to investigate the role of ATO/ATRA in FLT3-ITD AML. Here, we demonstrate that an ATO/ATRA combination selectively exerts synergistic cytotoxicity against FLT3-ITD AML cell lines (MV4;11/MOLM-13). The signaling pathways affected by ATO/ATRA include FLT3/STAT5/MYC, FLT3/STAT5/E2F1, FLT3/ERK/ATF5 and FLT3/AKT/ATF5.ATF5 may function as an oncogene in FLT3-ITD AML. Our findings provide experimental evidence that supports further exploration of ATO/ATRA in FLT3-ITD AML in vivo and warrants a clinical evaluation of regimens comprising an ATO/ATRA combination.

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S1526 Quizartinib (AC220) Quizartinib (AC220) is a second-generation FLT3 inhibitor for Flt3(ITD/WT) with IC50 of 1.1 nM/4.2 nM in MV4-11 and RS4;11 cells, respectively, 10-fold more selective for Flt3 than KIT, PDGFRα, PDGFRβ, RET, and CSF-1R. Phase 3. (34) (7)

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