Papillary thyroid carcinomas (PTC) are the most common type of thyroid malignancy. Most PTC carry one of the two mutations, RET/PTC rearrangement or BRAF mutation. Both mutations are able to activate the mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase/extracellular signal-regulated kinase (MEK/ERK) signaling transduction pathway leading to cellular proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis. PD0325901 is a specific MEK1/2 inhibitor and therefore is a promising drug to treat thyroid cancers with either RET/PTC or BRAF mutation. In this study we tested the effects of PD0325901 on PTC cells harboring either mutation in vitro by growth curves and Western blots and in vivo using a murine orthotopic xenograft model. We found that 50% growth inhibition (GI50) by PD0325901 was 11 nmol/L for the PTC cells with the RET/PTC1 rearrangement and 6.3 nmol/L for PTC cells with a BRAF mutation, with both concentrations readily achievable in serum. After 1 week of oral administration of PD0325901 (20–25 mg/kg/day) in mice, no tumor growth was detected in mice inoculated with PTC cells bearing a BRAF mutation. For PTC with the RET/PTC1 rearrangement, the average tumor volume of the orthotopic tumor was reduced by 58% as compared with controls. In conclusion, our data suggested that PTC cells carrying a BRAF mutation were more sensitive to PD0325901 than were PTC cells carrying the RET/PTC1 rearrangement. Our findings support the clinical evaluation of PD0325901 for patients with PTC and potentially other carcinomas with BRAF mutations. Mol Cancer Ther; 9(7); 1968–76. ©2010 AACR.
- Received January 19, 2010.
- Revision received March 30, 2010.
- Accepted May 4, 2010.
- ©2010 American Association for Cancer Research.