SYK as a New Therapeutic Target in B-Cell Precursor Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia


The identification of SYK as a master regulator of apoptosis controlling the activation of the PI3-K/AKT, NFκB, and STAT3 pathways—three major anti-apoptotic signaling pathways in B-lineage leukemia/lymphoma cells—prompts the hypothesis that rationally designed inhibitors targeting SYK may overcome the resistance of malignant B-lineage lymphoid cells to apoptosis and thereby provide the foundation for more effective multi-modality treatment regimens for poor prognosis B-precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (BPL). In recent preclinical proof-of-concept studies, a liposomal nanoparticle (LNP) formulation of a SYK substrate-binding site inhibitor, known as C61, has been developed as a nanomedicine candidate against poor prognosis and relapsed BPL. This nanoscale formulation of C61 exhibited a uniquely favorable pharmacokinetics and safety profile in mice, induced apoptosis in radiation-resistant primary leukemic cells taken directly from BPL patients as well as in vivo clonogenic BPL xenograft cells, destroyed the leukemic stem cell fraction of BPL blasts, and exhibited potent in vivo anti-leukemic activity in xenograft models of aggressive BPL. Further development of C61-LNP may provide the foundation for new and effective treatment strategies against therapy-refractory BPL.

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F. Uckun and S. Qazi, "SYK as a New Therapeutic Target in B-Cell Precursor Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia," Journal of Cancer Therapy, Vol. 5 No. 1, 2014, pp. 124-131. doi: 10.4236/jct.2014.51015.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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