IGF and mTOR pathway expression and in vitro effects of linsitinib and mTOR inhibitors in adrenocortical cancer
PURPOSE/OBJECTIVE:The IGF and mTOR-pathways are considered as potential targets for therapy in patients with adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC). This study aims to describe the IGF pathway in ACC and to explore the response to the combined treatment with the IGF1R/IR inhibitor linsitinib, and mTOR inhibitors (sirolimus and everolimus) in in vitro models of ACC. METHODS:The protein expression level of IGF2, IGF1R and IGF2R was evaluated by immunohistochemistry in 17 human ACCs and the mRNA expression level of IGF1, IGF2, IGF1R, IR isoforms A and B, IGF2R, IGF-Binding-Proteins[IGFBP]-1, 2, 3 and 6 was evaluated by RT-qPCR in 12 samples. In H295R and HAC15 ACC cell lines the combined effects of linsitinib and sirolimus or everolimus on cell survival were evaluated. RESULTS:A high protein expression of IGF2, IGF1R and IGF2R was observed in 82, 65 and 100% of samples, respectively. A high relative expression of IGF2 mRNA was found in the majority of samples. The mRNA levels of the IRA were higher than that of IRB and IGF1R in the majority of samples (75%). Linsitinib inhibits cell growth in the H295R and HAC15 cell lines and, combined with sirolimus or everolimus, linsitinib showed a significant additive effect. CONCLUSIONS:In addition to IGF2 and IGF1R, ACC express IGF2R, IRA and several IGFBPs, suggesting that the interplay between the different components of the IGF pathway in ACC could be more complex than previously considered. The addition of mTOR inhibitors to linsitinib may have stronger antiproliferative effects than linsitinib alone.
Effects of Ketoconazole on ACTH-Producing and Non-ACTH-Producing Neuroendocrine Tumor Cells
Prolonged remission of hypercortisolism with steroidogenesis inhibitors has been described in patients with ectopic adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) syndrome. The anti-proliferative and pro-apoptotic effect of ketoconazole in human cancer cells was previously suggested. The aim of this study was to explore the effects of ketoconazole on ACTH-producing and non-ACTH-producing neuroendocrine tumor (NET) cell lines. The effects of ketoconazole alone, and in combination with somatostatin analogs, were evaluated in two human cell lines: DMS-79 (ectopic ACTH-producing small cell lung carcinoma) and BON-1 (human pancreatic NET). Total DNA measurement, apoptosis, cell cycle, chromogranin A (CgA)/proopiomelanocortin (POMC) expression by qRT-PCR, serotonin, CgA, and ACTH secretion assays were performed. In both cell lines, ketoconazole significantly suppressed cell growth and colony formation in a dose and time-dependent manner. The effect in DMS-79 was primarily cytotoxic, while it was more apoptotic in BON-1 cells. Ketoconazole also induced increase in G0/G1 phase in both cell lines and arrest in phase G2/M of BON-1 cells. Ketoconazole did not affect the secretion of serotonin, CgA, ACTH, or the mRNA expression of CgA and POMC. Decreased serotonin secretion was observed after the combination treatment with pasireotide. These results suggest a direct effect of ketoconazole on cell proliferation, apoptosis, and cell cycle in both ACTH- and non-ACTH-producing NET cells.
Morbidity and mortality of bone metastases in advanced adrenocortical carcinoma: a multicenter retrospective study
Introduction Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) is a rare cancer that commonly spreads to the liver, lungs and lymph nodes. Bone metastases are infrequent. Objective The aim of this report was to describe the clinical characteristics, survival perspective, prognostic factors and frequency of adverse skeletal-related events (SREs) in patients with ACC who developed bone metastasis. Methods This is a retrospective, observational, multicenter, multinational study of patients diagnosed with bone metastases from ACC who were treated and followed up in three European countries (France, Italy and The Netherlands) and one center in the United States. Results Data of 156 patients were captured. The median overall survival was 11 months. SREs occurred in 47% of patients: 17% bone fractures, 17% spinal cord compression, 1% hypercalcemia, 12% developed more than one SRE. In multivariate analysis, cortisol hypersecretion was the only prognostic factor significantly associated with a higher mortality risk (hazard ratio (HR) 2.24, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.19-4.23, P = 0.013) and with the development of a SREs (of border line significance). The administration of antiresorptive therapies (bisphosphonates and denosumab) was associated with a lower risk of death, even if not significant, and their survival benefit appeared confined in patients attaining serum mitotane levels within the therapeutic range. Conclusion Bone metastases in ACC patients are associated with poor prognosis and high risk of SREs. Cortisol hypersecretion was the only prognostic factor suggesting a potential benefit from antisecretory medications. The therapeutic role of bisphosphonates and denosumab to improve patient outcome deserves to be tested in a prospective clinical trial.
Nonmosaic somatic HIF2A mutations associated with late onset polycythemia-paraganglioma syndrome: Newly recognized subclass of polycythemia-paraganglioma syndrome
BACKGROUND:Somatic mutations in hypoxia-inducible factor 2Î± (HIF2A) are associated with polycythemia-paraganglioma syndrome. Specifically, the classic presentation of female patients with recurrent paragangliomas (PGLs), polycythemia (at birth or in early childhood), and duodenal somatostatinomas has been described. Studies have demonstrated that somatic HIF2A mutations occur as postzygotic events and some to be associated with somatic mosaicism affecting hematopoietic and other tissue precursors. This phenomenon could explain the development of early onset of polycythemia in the absence of erythropoietin-secreting tumors. METHODS:Correlation analysis was performed between mosaicism of HIF2A mutant patients and clinical presentations. RESULTS:F-fluorodopa PET/CT as the most sensitive imaging modality. All patients demonstrated multiplicity, and none developed metastatic disease. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:These findings suggest that newer techniques need to be developed to detect somatic mosaicism in patients with this syndrome. Absence of HIF2A mosaicism in patients with somatic HIF2A mutations supports association with late onset of the disease, milder clinical phenotype, and an improved prognosis compared with patients who have HIF2A mosaicism.
Symptomatic and Radiological Response to 177Lu-DOTATATE for the Treatment of Functioning Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumors
PURPOSE/OBJECTIVE:Peptide receptor radionuclide therapy (PRRT) with the radiolabeled somatostatin analogue [Lutetium-177-DOTA0-Tyr3]octreotate (177Lu-DOTATATE) is widely applied for inoperable metastatic small intestinal and nonfunctioning pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (pNETs). The aim of this study is to describe the safety and efficacy of the treatment of functioning pNETs. METHODS:Patients were treated with up to four cycles of 177Lu-DOTATATE with an intended dose of 7.4 Gbq per cycle. Radiological (Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors 1.1), symptomatic, and biochemical response were analyzed retrospectively for all patients with a functioning pNET (insulinoma, gastrinoma, VIPoma, and glucagonoma) treated with 177Lu-DOTATATE. Quality of life (QOL) was assessed with the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire-Core Module questionnaire. RESULTS:Thirty-four patients with a metastatic functioning pNET (European Neuroendocrine Tumor Society grade 1 or 2) were included: 14 insulinomas, 5 VIPomas, 7 gastrinomas, and 8 glucagonomas. Subacute hematological toxicity, grade 3 or 4 occurred in 4 patients (12%) and a hormonal crisis in 3 patients (9%). PRRT resulted in partial or complete response in 59% of patients and the disease control rate was 78% in patients with baseline progression. 71% of patients with uncontrolled symptoms had a reduction of symptoms and a more than 80% decrease of circulating hormone levels was measured during follow-up. After PRRT, median progression-free survival was 18.1 months (interquartile range: 3.3 to 35.7) with a concurrent increase in QOL. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:Treatment with 177Lu-DOTATATE is a safe and effective therapy resulting in radiological, symptomatic and biochemical response in a high percentage of patients with metastatic functioning pNETs. Hormonal crises occur relatively frequent and preventive therapy should be considered before and/or during PRRT.
Advances in the medical treatment of Cushing's syndrome
Cushing's syndrome is associated with multisystem morbidity and, when suboptimally treated, increased mortality. Medical therapy is an option for patients if surgery is not successful and can be classified into pituitary-directed drugs, steroid synthesis inhibitors, and glucocorticoid receptor antagonists. In the last decade there have been new developments in each drug category. Targeting dopamine and somatostatin receptors on corticotroph adenomas with cabergoline or pasireotide, or both, controls cortisol production in up to 40% of patients. Potential new targets in corticotroph adenomas include the epidermal growth factor receptor, cyclin-dependent kinases, and heat shock protein 90. Osilodrostat and levoketoconazole are new inhibitors of steroidogenesis and are currently being evaluated in multicentre trials. CORT125134 is a new selective glucocorticoid receptor antagonist under investigation. We summarise the drug therapies for various forms of Cushing's syndrome and focus on emerging drugs and drug targets that have the potential for new and effective tailor-made pharmacotherapy for patients with Cushing's syndrome.
Hyponatraemia and hyperpigmentation in primary adrenal insufficiency [Case Report]
Hyponatraemia is a common electrolyte disturbance with multiple causes. We present a case of a 49-year-old Caucasian female with cholangiocarcinoma, who had a hyponatraemia which was initially assumed to be based on a syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion as paraneoplastic phenomenon. At physical examination, hyperpigmentation was seen and multiple episodes with syncope were reported. Subsequent endocrine assessment with a synthetic adrenocorticotropin hormone (ACTH) stimulation test and measurement of ACTH levels revealed primary adrenal insufficiency also known as Morbus Addison. We started hydrocortisone and fludrocortisone replacement therapy, resulting in resolving of symptoms, hyponatraemia and hyperpigmentation.
Neuroendocrine neoplasms: current and potential diagnostic, predictive and prognostic markers
Some biomarkers for functioning and non-functioning neuroendocrine neoplasms (NENs) are currently available. Despite their application in clinical practice, results should be interpreted cautiously. Considering the variable sensitivity and specificity of these parameters, there is an unmet need for novel biomarkers to improve diagnosis and predict patient outcome. Nowadays, several new biomarkers are being evaluated and may become future tools for the management of NENs. These biomarkers include (1) peptides and growth factors; (2) DNA and RNA markers based on genomics analysis, for example, the so-called NET test, which has been developed for analyzing gene transcripts in circulating blood; (3) circulating tumor/endothelial/progenitor cells or cell-free tumor DNA, which represent minimally invasive methods that would provide additional information for monitoring treatment response and (4) improved imaging techniques with novel radiolabeled somatostatin analogs or peptides. Below we summarize some future directions in the development of novel diagnostic and predictive/prognostic biomarkers in NENs. This review is focused on circulating and selected tissue markers.
Total and high-affinity corticosteroid-binding globulin depletion in septic shock is associated with mortality
CONTEXT/BACKGROUND:Corticosteroid-binding globulin (CBG) and albumin transport circulating cortisol. Cleavage of high-affinity CBG (haCBG) by neutrophil elastase at inflammatory sites causes cortisol release into tissues, facilitating immunomodulatory effects. OBJECTIVE:To determine whether depletion of haCBG is related to mortality in septic shock. DESIGN/METHODS:A single-center prospective observational cohort study of patients recruited with critical illness or septic shock, using serum samples collected at 0, 8, 24, 48 and 72Â hours. Serum total and haCBG, and total and free cortisol were assayed directly. Glucocorticoid treatment was an exclusion criterion. Mortality was assessed at 28Â days from Intensive Care Unit admission. RESULTS:Thirty septic shock (SS) and 42 nonseptic critical illness (CI) patients provided 195 serum samples. SS/CI patients had lower total CBG, haCBG and low-affinity CBG (laCBG) than controls. Total CBG and haCBG were significantly lower in septic shock patients who died than in those that survived (PÂ <Â 0.009, PÂ =Â 0.021, respectively). Total and free cortisol were higher in septic than nonseptic individuals. Free/total cortisol fractions were higher in those with low haCBG as observed in septic shock. However, cortisol levels were not associated with mortality. Albumin levels fell in sepsis but were not related to mortality. CONCLUSIONS:Low circulating haCBG concentrations are associated with mortality in septic shock. These results are consistent with an important physiological role for haCBG in cortisol tissue delivery in septic shock.
Targeted Systemic Treatment of Neuroendocrine Tumors: Current Options and Future Perspectives
Neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) originate from the neuroendocrine cell system in the bronchial and gastrointestinal tract and can produce hormones leading to distinct clinical syndromes. Systemic treatment of patients with unresectable NETs aims to control symptoms related to hormonal overproduction and tumor growth. In the last decades prognosis has improved as a result of increased detection of early stage disease and the introduction of somatostatin analogs (SSAs) as well as several new therapeutic options. SSAs are the first-line medical treatment of NETs and can control hormonal production and tumor growth. The development of next-generation multireceptor targeted and radiolabelled somatostatin analogs, as well as target-directed therapies (as second-line treatment options) further improve progression-free survival in NET patients. To date, however, a significant prolongation of overall survival with systemic treatment in NET has not been convincingly demonstrated. Several new medical options and treatment combinations will become available in the upcoming years, and although preliminary results of preclinical and clinical trials are encouraging, large, preferrably randomized clinical studies are required to provide definitive evidence of their effect on survival and symptom control.