Pharmacology and molecular mechanisms of clinically relevant estrogen estetrol and estrogen mimic BMI-135 for the treatment of endocrine-resistant breast cancer

Balkees Abderrahman, Philipp Y. Maximov, Ramona F. Curpan, Jay S. Hanspal, Ping Fan, Rui Xiong, Debra A. Tonetti, Gregory R.J. Thatcher, V. Craig Jordan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Long-term estrogen deprivation (LTED) with tamoxifen (TAM) or aromatase inhibitors leads to endocrine-resistance, whereby physiologic levels of estrogen kill breast cancer (BC). Estrogen therapy is effective in treating patients with advanced BC after resistance to TAM and aromatase inhibitors develops. This therapeutic effect is attributed to estrogen-induced apoptosis via the estrogen receptor (ER). Estrogen therapy can have unpleasant gynecologic and nongynecologic adverse events. Here, we study estetrol (E4) and a model Selective Human ER Partial Agonist (ShERPA) BMI-135. Estetrol and ShERPA TTC- 352 are being evaluated in clinical trials. These agents are proposed as safer estrogenic candidates compared with 17β-estradiol (E2) for the treatment of endocrine-resistant BC. Cell viability assays, real-time polymerase chain reaction, luciferase reporter assays, chromatin immunoprecipitation, docking and molecular dynamics simulations, human unfolded protein response (UPR) RT2 PCR profiler arrays, live cell microscopic imaging and analysis, and annexin V staining assays were conducted. Our work was done in eight biologically different human BC cell lines and one human endometrial cancer cell line, and results were compared with full agonists estrone, E2, and estriol, a benchmark partial agonist triphenylethylene bisphenol (BPTPE), and antagonists 4-hydroxytamoxifen and endoxifen. Our study shows the pharmacology of E4 and BMI- 135 as less-potent full-estrogen agonists as well as their molecular mechanisms of tumor regression in LTED BC through triggering a rapid UPR and apoptosis. Our work concludes that the use of a full agonist to treat BC is potentially superior to a partial agonist given BPTPE's delayed induction of UPR and apoptosis, with a higher probability of tumor clonal evolution and resistance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)364-381
Number of pages18
JournalMolecular pharmacology
Volume69
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmacology

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Pharmacology and molecular mechanisms of clinically relevant estrogen estetrol and estrogen mimic BMI-135 for the treatment of endocrine-resistant breast cancer'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this