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Keywords:

  • tyrosine kinases;
  • signal transduction;
  • acute myeloid leukaemia;
  • polycythaemia

Summary

Aberrant activation of Janus kinase/signal transducers and activators of transcription (JAK/STAT) signalling is implicated in a number of haematological malignancies and effective JAK inhibitors may be therapeutically useful. We found that Gö6976, an indolocarbazole inhibitor of the calcium-dependent isozymes of protein kinase C (PKC), inhibited interleukin 3/granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor-induced signalling, proliferation and survival whereas Gö6983, a broad spectrum PKC inhibitor, had no such effects. Gö6976 was found to be a direct and potent inhibitor of JAK2 in vitro. Gö6976 also inhibited signalling, survival and proliferation in cells expressing the leukaemia-associated TEL–JAK2 fusion protein and the myeloproliferative disorder (MPD)-associated JAK2 V617F mutant. In primary acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) cells, incubation with Gö6976 reduced constitutive STAT activity in all cases studied. In addition, Akt and mitogen-activated protein kinase phosphorylation were reduced in 4/5 FLT3-internal tandem duplication (ITD) positive AML cases and 7/13 FLT3-wild-type (WT) cases. Expression of FLT3-WT, ITD and D835Y in 32D cells showed that Gö6976 is also a potent inhibitor of WT and mutant FLT3. In AML cells, Gö6976 reduced the survival to 55 ± 5% of control in FLT3-ITD cases and to 69 ± 5% in FLT3-WT samples. These data may help identify clinically useful compounds based on the structure of Gö6976, which can be employed for the treatment of MPDs as well as AML.