Combined targeting of EGFR/HER promotes anti-tumor efficacy in subsets of KRAS mutant lung cancer resistant to single EGFR blockade

Ijeoma Adaku Umelo, Olivier De Wever, Peter Kronenberger, Jan Van Deun, Alfiah Noor, Kshitiz Singh, Erik Teugels, Gang Chen, Marc Bracke, Jacques De Grève

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

KRAS is a frequently mutated oncogene in lung cancer and among the most refractory to EGFR targeted therapy. Recently, preclinical evidence in pancreatic cancer has demonstrated that mutant KRAS can be regulated by EGFR. However, the distinct correlation between the EGFR/HER family members and mutant KRAS has not been investigated. Here, we show that non-small cell lung cancer cell lines harboring differing isoforms of mutant KRAS, can be broadly divided into EGFR/HER dependent and EGFR/HER independent groups. Combined therapeutic targeting of EGFR, HER2 and HER3 in isoforms regulated by extracellular growth signals promotes in vitro and in vivo efficacy. We also provide evidence that depletion of EGFR via RNA interference specifically abolishes the EGFR/KRAS interaction in the dependent subset. Taken together, these findings suggest that upstream inhibition of the EGFR/HER receptors may be effective in treating a subset of KRAS mutant lung cancers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20132-20144
Number of pages13
JournalOncotarget
Volume6
Issue number24
Publication statusPublished - 21 Aug 2015

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