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Human models of NUP98-KDM5A megakaryocytic leukemia in mice contribute to uncovering new biomarkers and therapeutic vulnerabilities.

Acute megakaryoblastic leukemia (AMKL) represents ∼10% of pediatric acute myeloid leukemia cases and typically affects young children (<3 years of age). It remains plagued with extremely poor treatment outcomes (<40% cure rates), mostly due to primary chemotherapy refractory disease and/or early relapse. Recurrent and mutually exclusive chimeric fusion oncogenes have been detected in 60% to 70% of cases and include nucleoporin 98 (NUP98) gene rearrangements, most commonly NUP98-KDM5A. Human models of NUP98-KDM5A-driven AMKL capable of faithfully recapitulating the disease have been lacking, and patient samples are rare, further limiting biomarkers and drug discovery. To overcome these impediments, we overexpressed NUP98-KDM5A in human cord blood hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells using a lentiviral-based approach to create physiopathologically relevant disease models. The NUP98-KDM5A fusion oncogene was a potent inducer of maturation arrest, sustaining long-term proliferative and progenitor capacities of engineered cells in optimized culture conditions. Adoptive transfer of NUP98-KDM5A-transformed cells into immunodeficient mice led to multiple subtypes of leukemia, including AMKL, that phenocopy human disease phenotypically and molecularly. The integrative molecular characterization of synthetic and patient NUP98-KDM5A AMKL samples revealed SELP, MPIG6B, and NEO1 as distinctive and novel disease biomarkers. Transcriptomic and proteomic analyses pointed to upregulation of the JAK-STAT signaling pathway in the model AMKL. Both synthetic models and patient-derived xenografts of NUP98-rearranged AMKL showed in vitro therapeutic vulnerability to ruxolitinib, a clinically approved JAK2 inhibitor. Overall, synthetic human AMKL models contribute to defining functional dependencies of rare genotypes of high-fatality pediatric leukemia, which lack effective and rationally designed treatments.

Date de publication
12 novembre 2019
Cardin S, Bilodeau M, Roussy M, Aubert L, Milan T, Jouan L, Rouette A, Laramée L, Gendron P, Duchaine J, Decaluwe H, Spinella JF, Mourad S, Couture F, Sinnett D, Haddad E, Landry JR, Ma J, Humphries RK, Roux PP, Hébert J, Gruber TA, Wilhelm B, Cellot S
Référence PubMed
Blood Adv 2019;3(21):3307-3321
ID PubMed
Pediatric Hematology-Oncology Division, Charles-Bruneau Cancer Center, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire (CHU) Sainte-Justine Research Center, Montréal, QC, Canada.