The novel proautophagy anticancer drug ABTL0812 potentiates chemotherapy in adenocarcinoma and squamous nonsmall cell lung cancer

Anna López-Plana, Patricia Fernández-Nogueira, Pau Muñoz-Guardiola, Sònia Solé-Sánchez, Elisabet Megías-Roda, Héctor Pérez-Montoyo, Patricia Jauregui, Marc Yeste-Velasco, Mariana Gómez-Ferreria, Tatiana Erazo, Elisabet Ametller, Leire Recalde-Percaz, Núria Moragas-Garcia, Aleix Noguera-Castells, Mario Mancino, Teresa Morán, Ernest Nadal, José Alfón, Carles Domènech, Pere GasconJose M. Lizcano, Gemma Fuster*, Paloma Bragado

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Around 40% of newly diagnosed lung cancer patients are Stage IV, where the improvement of survival and reduction of disease-related adverse events is the main goal for oncologists. In this scenario, we present preclinical evidence supporting the use of ABTL0812 in combination with chemotherapy for treating advanced and metastatic Nonsmall cell lung adenocarcinomas (NSCLC) and squamous carcinomas. ABTL0812 is a new chemical entity, currently in Phase 1b/2a clinical trial for advanced squamous NSCLC in combination with paclitaxel and carboplatin (P/C), after successfully completing the first-in-human trial where it showed an excellent safety profile and signs of efficacy. We show here that ABTL0812 inhibits Akt/mTOR axis by inducing the overexpression of TRIB3 and activating autophagy in lung squamous carcinoma cell lines. Furthermore, treatment with ABTL0812 also induces AMPK activation and ROS accumulation. Moreover, combination of ABTL0812 with chemotherapy markedly increases the therapeutic effect of chemotherapy without increasing toxicity. We further show that combination of ABTL0812 and chemotherapy induces nonapoptotic cell death mediated by TRIB3 activation and autophagy induction. We also present preliminary clinical data indicating that TRIB3 could serve as a potential novel pharmacodynamic biomarker to monitor ABTL0812 activity administered alone or in combination with chemotherapy in squamous NSCLC patients. The safety profile of ABTL0812 and its good synergy with chemotherapy potentiate the therapeutic potential of current lines of treatment based on chemotherapy regimens, arising as a promising option for improving these patients therapeutic expectancy.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1163-1179
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Cancer
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2020


  • ABTL0812
  • chemoresistance autophagy
  • lung cancer
  • TRIB3


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