The mTOR inhibitor CCI-779 induces apoptosis and inhibits growth in preclinical models of primary adult human ALL

Academic Article


  • Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) in adult patients is often resistant to current therapy, making the development of novel therapeutic agents paramount. We investigated whether mTOR inhibitors (MTIs), a class of signal transduction inhibitors, would be effective in primary human ALL. Lymphoblasts from adult patients with precursor B ALL were cultured on bone marrow stroma and were treated with CCI-779, a second generation MTI. Treated cells showed a dramatic decrease in cell proliferation and an increase in apoptotic cells, compared to untreated cells. We also assessed the effect of CCI-779 in a NOD/SCID xenograft model. We treated a total of 68 mice generated from the same patient samples with CCI-779 after establishment of disease. Animals treated with CCI-779 showed a decrease in peripheral-blood blasts and in splenomegaly. In dramatic contrast, untreated animals continued to show expansion of human ALL. We performed immunoblots to validate the inhibition of the mTOR signaling intermediate phospho-S6 in human ALL, finding down-regulation of this target in xenografted human ALL exposed to CCI-779. We conclude that MTIs can inhibit the growth of adult human ALL and deserve close examination as therapeutic agents against a disease that is often not curable with current therapy. © 2006 by The American Society of Hematology.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • Blood  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Teachey DT; Obzut DA; Cooperman J; Fang J; Carroll M; Choi JK; Houghton PJ; Brown VI; Grupp SA
  • Start Page

  • 1149
  • End Page

  • 1155
  • Volume

  • 107
  • Issue

  • 3