AR42, a novel histone deacetylase inhibitor, as a potential therapy for vestibular schwannomas and meningiomas

Matthew L. Bush, Janet Oblinger, Victoria Brendel, Griffin Santarelli, Jie Huang, Elena M. Akhmametyeva, Sarah S. Burns, Justin Wheeler, Jeremy Davis, Charles W. Yates, Abhik R. Chaudhury, Samuel Kulp, Ching Shih Chen, Long Sheng Chang, D. Bradley Welling, Abraham Jacob

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2) is an autosomal-dominant disease that results in the formation of bilateral vestibular schwannomas (VSs) and multiple meningiomas. Treatment options for NF2-associated tumors are limited, and to date, no medical therapies are FDA approved. The ideal chemotherapeutic agent would inhibit both VS and meningiomas simultaneously. The objectives of this study are (1) to test the efficacy of AR42, a novel histone deacetylase inhibitor, to inhibit VS and meningioma growth and (2) to investigate this drug's mechanisms of action. Primary cultures of human VS and meningioma cells were established. Nf2-deficient mouse schwannoma and benign human meningioma Ben-Men-1 cells were also cultured. Cells were treated with AR42, and the drug's effects on proliferation and the cell cycle were analyzed using a methanethiosulfonate assay and flow cytometry, respectively. Human phospho-kinase arrays and Western blots were used to evaluate the effects of AR42 on intracellular signaling. The in vivo efficacy of AR42 was investigated using schwannoma xenografts. Tumor volumes were quantified using high-field, volumetric MRI, and molecular target analysis was performed using immunohistochemistry. AR42 inhibited the growth of primary human VS and Nf2-deficient mouse schwannoma cells with a half maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) of 500 nM and 250-350 nM, respectively. AR42 also inhibited primary meningioma cells and the benign meningioma cell line, Ben-Men-1, with IC50 values of 1.5 mM and 1.0 mM, respectively. AR42 treatment induced cell-cycle arrest at G2 and apoptosis in both VS and meningioma cells. Also, AR42 exposure decreased phosphorylated Akt in schwannoma and meningioma cells. In vivo treatment with AR42 inhibited the growth of schwannoma xenografts, induced apoptosis, and decreased Akt activation. The potent growth inhibitory activity of AR42 in schwannoma and meningioma cells suggests that AR42 should be further evaluated as a potential treatment for NF2-associated tumors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)983-999
Number of pages17
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2011


  • AR42
  • Akt
  • Cell-cycle arrest
  • HDAC inhibitors (HDACis)
  • Meningiomas
  • Merlin
  • NF2 gene
  • Neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2)
  • Vestibular schwannomas (VS)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'AR42, a novel histone deacetylase inhibitor, as a potential therapy for vestibular schwannomas and meningiomas'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this