Overriding Imatinib Resistance with a Novel ABL Kinase Inhibitor

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Science  16 Jul 2004:
Vol. 305, Issue 5682, pp. 399-401
DOI: 10.1126/science.1099480

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Resistance to the ABL kinase inhibitor imatinib (STI571 or Gleevec) in chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) occurs through selection for tumor cells harboring BCR-ABL kinase domain point mutations that interfere with drug binding. Crystallographic studies predict that most imatinib-resistant mutants should remain sensitive to inhibitors that bind ABL with less stringent conformational requirements. BMS-354825 is an orally bioavailable ABL kinase inhibitor with two-log increased potency relative to imatinib that retains activity against 14 of 15 imatinib-resistant BCR-ABL mutants. BMS-354825 prolongs survival of mice with BCR-ABL–driven disease and inhibits proliferation of BCR-ABL–positive bone marrow progenitor cells from patients with imatinib-sensitive and imatinib-resistant CML. These data illustrate how molecular insight into kinase inhibitor resistance can guide the design of second-generation targeted therapies.

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