Novel Mechanisms and Therapeutics in the Treatment for Cancer-Induced Bone Pain
AdvisorVanderah, Todd W.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractMany common cancers, including breast, prostate and lung, have a predilection to metastasize to the bone, bringing not only bone destruction but severe pain. Although novel chemotherapeutic agents have increased life expectancy, patients are experiencing higher incidences of fracture, pain and drug-induced side effects; furthermore, recent findings suggest that patients are severely under-treated for their cancer pain. Strong analgesics, namely opiates, are the first-line therapy in alleviating cancer-related pain despite severe side effects including enhanced bone destruction with sustained administration. Bone resorption is primarily treated with bisphosphonates, which can bring highly undesirable side-effects including nephrotoxicity and osteonecrosis of the jaw. Thus novel therapeutics are needed to treat the pain of metastatic cancer patients. Animal models of cancer-induced bone pain (CIBP) have revealed that the neurochemistry of cancer has distinctive features from other chronic pain states. These include factors released from the cancer cells, tumor activated macrophages and increased osteoclast degredation of bone within the bone microenvironment, all acting to sensitize free nerve endings.One possibility of inhibiting cancer-mediated pain inducing factors includes agonism of the Cannabinoid 2 receptor agonists. Cannabinoid CB2 receptor-specific agonists have been shown to reduce bone loss and stimulate bone formation in a model of osteoporosis. CB2 agonists produce analgesia in both inflammatory and neuropathic pain models. Notably, mixed CB1/CB2 agonists also demonstrate a reduction in ErbB2-driven breast cancer progression. Osteolytic sarcoma within the femur produced spontaneous and touch evoked behavioral signs of pain within the tumor-bearing limb. The systemic administration of AM1241 both acutely and for 7 days significantly attenuated spontaneous and evoked pain in the inoculated limb. Sustained AM1241 significantly reduced bone loss and decreased the incidence of cancer-induced bone fractures. In addition, CB2 agonists significantly reduce breast cancer-induced bone pain, bone loss and breast cancer proliferation in part via cytokine/chemokine suppression. Studies utilized the spontaneously-occurring syngenic murine mammary cell line (66.1) implanted and sealed into the femur intramedullary space. Measurements were made of spontaneous pain, bone loss and cancer proliferation. The central and systemic administration of the CB2 agonist JWH015 for seven days significantly attenuates pain. Pharmacological characterization with cannabinoid 1 and 2 antagonists demonstrates that the effects JWH015 on pain were mediated by the CB2 receptor. We and others have found that bone induced cancer pain increases the expression of GFAP and Iba1 in the lumbar spinal cord which are markers of astrocytes and microglia respectively, compared to control animals. After administration of JWH015 (i.t), the release of spinal pro-inflammatory cytokines, IL-6 and TNFá, are reduced suggesting that modulation of glial cytokines may be one mechanism by which CB2 agonists can attenuate pain centrally. On the other hand, systemic administration of JWH015 reduces cancer-induced elevation of cytokines in the tumor microenvironment, suggesting a mechanism by which CB2 agonist is attenuating pain peripherally. Additionally, systemic administration improves bone modification, as demonstrated via micro-computed tomography and bone serum markers while decreasing femoral tumor burden. In vitro, JWH015 reduced cancer cell proliferation and other inflammatory mediators shown to promote pain, bone loss and proliferation. These results suggest CB2 agonists as a novel treatment for breast cancer-induced bone pain, where disease modifications include a reduction in bone loss, suppression of cancer growth, attenuation of severe bone-pain and increased survival without the major side effects of current therapeutic options. Another future therapeutic option for metastatic bone cancer pain may include cathepsin inhibitors. Cysteine cathepsins (B, C, F, H, K, L, O, L2/V, W, X/Z) are highly expressed in many human cancers and have been associated with poor patient prognosis. In the RIP1-Tag2 transgenic model of pancreatic cancer, mice treated with VBY-825, a reversible inhibitor of cathepsins S, B, V, L, K showed a significant reduction in tumor incidence and growth. Here we demonstrate the cathepsin inhibitor VBY-825 reduces cancer-induced pain behaviors. Additionally, tumor bearing animals treated with VBY-825 demonstrate a reduction in bone resorption, possibly mediated through a reduction in osteoclast activity. These results indicate that a cathepsin inhibitor targeting multiple cathepsins, such as VBY-825, could be a novel therapeutic for bone metastases.Part of the failure to palliate cancer pain is due to a poor understanding of the etiology of cancer pain. Preclinical studies have just begun to scratch the surface on how such cancers may interact with the bone microenvironment to result in pain and bone loss. Further studies are desperately needed at both the preclinical and clinical level to determine the unique molecular profile of cancer pain that may lead to the development of superior therapeutics for CIBP. The studies presented herein provide preclinical evidence that warrant the investigation of these compounds in the clinic as treatment for cancer-induced bone pain.
Degree ProgramGraduate College