Proteome Instability Is a Therapeutic Vulnerability in Mismatch Repair-Deficient Cancer.

Graphical abstract from McGrail et al., 2020.

Copyright © 2020 Elsevier B.V.

McGrail DJ, Garnett J, Yin J, Dai H, Shih DJH, Lam TNA, Li Y, Sun C, Li Y, Schmandt R, Wu JY, Hu L, Liang Y, Peng G, Jonasch E, Menter D, Yates MS, Kopetz S, Lu KH, Broaddus R, Mills GB, Sahni N, Lin SY.

Cancer Cell

March 16, 2020

Deficient DNA mismatch repair (dMMR) induces a hypermutator phenotype that can lead to tumorigenesis; however, the functional impact of the high mutation burden resulting from this phenotype remains poorly explored. Here, we demonstrate that dMMR-induced destabilizing mutations lead to proteome instability in dMMR tumors, resulting in an abundance of misfolded protein aggregates. To compensate, dMMR cells utilize a Nedd8-mediated degradation pathway to facilitate clearance of misfolded proteins. Blockade of this Nedd8 clearance pathway with MLN4924 causes accumulation of misfolded protein aggregates, ultimately inducing immunogenic cell death in dMMR cancer cells. To leverage this immunogenic cell death, we combined MLN4924 treatment with PD1 inhibition and found the combination was synergistic, significantly improving efficacy over either treatment alone.

Last updated: August 20, 2020