Paclitaxel is one of the most widely used antineoplastic drugs in clinic. Unfortunately, the occurrence of cellular resistance has limited its efficacy and application. The ATP- Binding Cassette Subfamily B member 1 (ABCB1/P-gp) and Subfamily C member 10 (ABCC10/MRP7) are the major membrane protein transporters responsible for the efflux of paclitaxel, constituting one of the most important mechanisms of paclitaxel resistance. Here we demonstrated that the Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitor, ibrutinib, significantly enhanced the antitumor activity of paclitaxel by antagonizing the efflux function of ABCB1 and ABCC10 in cells overexpressing these transporters. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the ABCB1 or ABCC10 protein expression was not altered after treatment with ibrutinib for up to 72 h using Western blot analysis. However, the ATPase activity of ABCB1 was significantly stimulated by treatment with ibrutinib. Molecular docking analysis suggested the binding conformation of ibrutinib within the large cavity of the transmembrane region of ABCB1. Importantly, ibrutinib could effectively enhance paclitaxel-induced inhibition on the growth of ABCB1- and ABCC10-overexpressing tumors in nude athymic mice. These results demonstrate that the combination of ibrutinib and paclitaxel can effectively antagonize ABCB1- or ABCC10- mediated paclitaxel resistance that could be of great clinical interest.
- Received August 1, 2016.
- Revision received January 28, 2017.
- Accepted February 4, 2017.
- Copyright ©2017, American Association for Cancer Research.