The class I/IV HDAC inhibitor mocetinostat increases tumor antigen presentation, decreases immune suppressive cell types and augments checkpoint inhibitor therapy

Checkpoint inhibitor therapy has led to major treatment advances for several cancers including non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Despite this, a significant percentage of patients do not respond or develop resistance. Potential mechanisms of resistance include lack of expression of programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1), decreased capacity to present tumor antigens, and the presence of an immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment. Mocetinostat is a spectrum-selective inhibitor of class I/IV histone deacetylases (HDACs), a family of proteins implicated in epigenetic silencing of immune regulatory genes in tumor and immune cells. Mocetinostat upregulated PD-L1 and antigen presentation genes including class I and II human leukocyte antigen (HLA) family members in a panel of NSCLC cell lines in vitro. Mocetinostat target gene promoters were occupied by a class I HDAC and exhibited increased active histone marks after mocetinostat treatment. Mocetinostat synergized with interferon γ (IFN-γ) in regulating class II transactivator (CIITA), a master regulator of class II HLA gene expression. In a syngeneic tumor model, mocetinostat decreased intratumoral T-regulatory cells (Tregs) and potentially myeloid-derived suppressor cell (MDSC) populations and increased intratumoral CD8+ populations. In ex vivo assays, patient-derived, mocetinostat-treated Tregs also showed significant down regulation of FOXP3 and HELIOS. The combination of mocetinostat and a murine PD-L1 antibody antagonist demonstrated increased anti-tumor activity compared to either therapy alone in two syngeneic tumor models. Together, these data provide evidence that mocetinostat modulates immune-related genes in tumor cells as well as immune cell types in the tumor microenvironment and enhances checkpoint inhibitor therapy.

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S1122 Mocetinostat (MGCD0103) Mocetinostat (MGCD0103, MG0103) is a potent HDAC inhibitor with most potency for HDAC1 with IC50 of 0.15 μM in a cell-free assay, 2- to 10- fold selectivity against HDAC2, 3, and 11, and no activity to HDAC4, 5, 6, 7, and 8. Mocetinostat (MGCD0103) induces apoptosis and autophagy. Phase 2.

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