Identification of triciribine as a novel myeloid cell differentiation inducer


PLoS One. 2024 May 14;19(5):e0303428. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0303428. eCollection 2024.


Differentiation therapy using all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) for acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) is well established. However, because the narrow application and tolerance development of ATRA need to be improved, we searched for another efficient myeloid differentiation inducer. Kinase activation is involved in leukemia biology and differentiation block. To identify novel myeloid differentiation inducers, we used a Kinase Inhibitor Screening Library. Using a nitroblue tetrazolium dye reduction assay and real-time quantitative PCR using NB4 APL cells, we revealed that, PD169316, SB203580, SB202190 (p38 MAPK inhibitor), and triciribine (TCN) (Akt inhibitor) potently increased the expression of CD11b. We focused on TCN because it was reported to be well tolerated by patients with advanced hematological malignancies. Nuclear/cytoplasmic (N/C) ratio was significantly decreased, and myelomonocytic markers (CD11b and CD11c) were potently induced by TCN in both NB4 and acute myeloid leukemia (AML) M2 derived HL-60 cells. Western blot analysis using NB4 cells demonstrated that TCN promoted ERK1/2 phosphorylation, whereas p38 MAPK phosphorylation was not affected, suggesting that activation of the ERK pathway is involved in TCN-induced differentiation. We further examined that whether ATRA may affect phosphorylation of ERK and p38, and found that there was no obvious effect, suggesting that ATRA induced differentiation is different from TCN effect. To reveal the molecular mechanisms involved in TCN-induced differentiation, we performed microarray analysis. Pathway analysis using DAVID software indicated that “hematopoietic cell lineage” and “cytokine-cytokine receptor interaction” pathways were enriched with high significance. Real-time PCR analysis demonstrated that components of these pathways including IL1β, CD3D, IL5RA, ITGA6, CD44, ITGA2B, CD37, CD9, CSF2RA, and IL3RA, were upregulated by TCN-induced differentiation. Collectively, we identified TCN as a novel myeloid cell differentiation inducer, and trials of TCN for APL and non-APL leukemia are worthy of exploration in the future.

PMID:38743735 | DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0303428