Caveolae-Mediated Endocytosis Is Critical for Albumin Cellular Uptake and Response to Albumin-Bound Chemotherapy.

Chatterjee M, Ben-Josef E, Robb R, Vedaie M, Seum S, Thirumoorthy K, Palanichamy K, Harbrecht M, Chakravarti A, Williams TM
Cancer Res 77 5925-5937 01/01/2017


Nab-paclitaxel, a nanoparticle conjugate of paclitaxel to human albumin, exhibits efficacy in pancreatic cancer, non-small cell lung cancer and breast cancer. However, there is a lack of predictive biomarkers to identify patients who might benefit most from its administration. This study addresses this gap in knowledge by identifying that caveolin-1 (Cav-1) is a candidate mechanism-based biomarker. Caveolae are small membrane invaginations important for transendothelial albumin uptake. Cav-1, the principal structural component of caveolae, is overexpressed in the cancers noted above that respond to nab-paclitaxel. Thus, we hypothesized that Cav-1 may be critical for albumin uptake in tumors and perhaps determine their response to this drug. Cav-1 protein levels correlated positively with nab-paclitaxel sensitivity. RNAi-mediated attenuation of Cav-1 expression reduced uptake of albumin and nab-paclitaxel in cancer cells and rendered them resistant to nab-paclitaxel-induced apoptosis. Conversely, Cav-1 overexpression enhanced sensitivity to nab-paclitaxel. Selection for cellular resistance to nab-paclitaxel in cell culture correlated with a loss of Cav-1 expression. In mouse xenograft models, cancer cells, where Cav-1 was attenuated, exhibited resistance to the antitumor effects of nab-paclitaxel therapy. Overall, our findings suggest Cav-1 as a predictive biomarker for the response to nab-paclitaxel and other albumin-based cancer therapeutic drugs.

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