Flt3 does not play a critical role in murine myeloid leukemias induced by MLL fusion genes.

Published online

Journal Article

Leukemias harboring MLL translocations are frequent in children and adults, and respond poorly to therapies. The receptor tyrosine kinase FLT3 is highly expressed in these leukemias. In vitro studies have shown that pediatric MLL-rearranged ALL cells are sensitive to FLT3 inhibitors and clinical trials are ongoing to measure their therapeutic efficacy. We sought to determine the contribution of Flt3 in the pathogenesis of MLL-rearranged leukemias using a myeloid leukemia mouse model. Bone marrow from Flt3 null mice transduced with MLL-ENL or MLL-CBP was transplanted into host mice and Flt3 (-/-) leukemias were compared to their Flt3 wild type counterparts. Flt3 deficiency did not delay disease onset and had minimal impact on leukemia characteristics. To determine the anti-leukemic effect of FLT3 inhibition we studied the sensitivity of MLL-ENL leukemia cells to the FLT3 inhibitor PKC412 ex vivo. As previously reported for human MLL-rearranged leukemias, murine MLL-ENL leukemia cells with higher Flt3 levels were more sensitive to the cytotoxicity of PKC412. Interestingly, Flt3 deficient leukemia samples also displayed some sensitivity to PKC412. Our findings demonstrate that myeloid leukemias induced by MLL-rearranged genes are not dependent upon Flt3 signaling. They also highlight the discrepancy between the sensitivity of cells to Flt3 inhibition in vitro and the lack of contribution of Flt3 to the pathogenesis of MLL-rearranged leukemias in vivo.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Albouhair, S; Morgado, E; Lavau, C

Published Date

  • 2013

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 8 / 8

Start / End Page

  • e72261 -

PubMed ID

  • 23977266

Pubmed Central ID

  • 23977266

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1932-6203

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1371/journal.pone.0072261


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States