Aberrant signaling triggered by oncogenic or hyperactive RAS proteins contributes to the malignant phenotypes in a significant percentage of myeloid malignancies. Of these, juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia (JMML), an aggressive childhood cancer, is largely driven by mutations in RAS genes and those that encode regulators of these proteins. The Mx1-cre kras+/G12D mouse model mirrors several key features of this disease and has been used extensively to determine the utility and mechanism of small molecule therapeutics in the context of RAS-driven myeloproliferative disorders. Treatment of disease-bearing KRASG12D mice with rigosertib (RGS), a small molecule RAS mimetic that is in phase II and III clinical trials for MDS and AML, decreased the severity of leukocytosis and splenomegaly and extended their survival. RGS also increased the frequency of HSCs and rebalanced the ratios of myeloid progenitors. Further analysis of KRASG12D HSPCs in vitro revealed that RGS suppressed hyperproliferation in response to GM-CSF and inhibited the phosphorylation of key RAS effectors. Together, these data suggest that RGS might be of clinical benefit in RAS-driven myeloid disorders.
- Myeloproliferative disorder