Pre-clinical efficacy of combined therapy with novel β-catenin antagonist BC2059 and histone deacetylase inhibitor against AML cells Academic Article uri icon


MeSH Major

  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Drug Synergism
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors
  • Histone Deacetylases
  • Leukemia, Myeloid, Acute
  • beta Catenin


  • The canonical wingless-type MMTV integration site (WNT)-β-catenin pathway is essential for self-renewal, growth and survival of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) stem/blast progenitor cells (BPCs). Deregulated WNT signaling inhibits degradation of β-catenin, causing increased nuclear translocation and co-factor activity of β-catenin with the transcriptional regulator T-cell factor (TCF) 4/lymphoid enhancer factor 1 in AML BPCs. Here, we determined the pre-clinical anti-AML activity of the anthraquinone oxime-analog BC2059 (BC), known to attenuate β-catenin levels. BC treatment disrupted the binding of β-catenin with the scaffold protein transducin β-like 1 and proteasomal degradation and decline in the nuclear levels of β-catenin. This was associated with reduced transcriptional activity of TCF4 and expression of its target genes, cyclin D1, c-MYC and survivin. BC treatment dose-dependently induced apoptosis of cultured and primary AML BPCs. Treatment with BC also significantly improved the median survival of immune-depleted mice engrafted with either cultured or primary AML BPCs, exhibiting nuclear expression of β-catenin. Co-treatment with the pan-histone deacetylase inhibitor panobinostat and BC synergistically induced apoptosis of cultured and primary AML BPCs, including those expressing FLT3-ITD, as well as further significantly improved the survival of immune-depleted mice engrafted with primary AML BPCs. These findings underscore the promising pre-clinical activity and warrant further testing of BC against human AML, especially those expressing FLT3-ITD.

publication date

  • June 9, 2015



  • Academic Article



  • eng

PubMed Central ID

  • PMC4456205

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1038/leu.2014.340

PubMed ID

  • 25482131

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 1267

end page

  • 78


  • 29


  • 6