Modulation of HER3 is a marker of dynamic cell signaling in ovarian cancer Implications for Pertuzumab Sensitivity: implications for Pertuzumab sensitivity

Yoko Nagumo, Dana Faratian, Peter Mullen, David J. Harrison, Max Hasmann, Simon P. Langdon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study was designed to evaluate the expression of HER receptors as a marker of sensitivity to the humanized anti-HER2 monoclonal antibody pertuzumab in ovarian cancer cells. In a recent clinical trial, low levels of HER3 mRNA have been shown to associate with pertuzumab response when combined with gemcitabine. We sought to define how pertuzumab modulated HER expression levels in ovarian cancer using cell line models to better understand differential and dynamic receptor expression in therapeutic response. Changes in HER3 mRNA expression were also assessed in pertuzumab-treated xenografts. HER3 mRNA and, to a lesser extent, HER2, were down-regulated after stimulation both with heregulin-beta 1 and epidermal growth factor in a range of ovarian cancer cell lines either growth sensitive or growth resistant to pertuzumab. Pertuzumab reversed this down-regulation and the magnitude of the reversal correlated with pertuzumab sensitivity. The change in HER3 mRNA expression correlated inversely to how much the extracellular signal-regulated kinase and phosphoinositide 3-kinase pathways were dynamically activated with stimulation. Finally, up-regulation of HER3 mRNA was found in cancer xenografts treated with pertuzumab. We conclude that HER3 mRNA is down-regulated by both heregulin-beta 1 and epidermal growth factor activation. This suggests that in some tumors, low HER3 mRNA expression is driven by, or dependent on, growth factor. HER3 mRNA expression is effectively reversed in pertuzumab-sensitive tumors. These data are consistent with low HER3 mRNA identifying a pertuzumab-sensitive phenotype. (Mol Cancer Res 2009;7(9):1563-71)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1563-1571
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular Cancer Research
Volume7
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2009

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