Metformin Inhibits Cellular Proliferation and Bioenergetics in Colorectal Cancer Patient-Derived Xenografts

Nur-Afidah Mohamed Suhaimi, Wai Min Phyo, Hao Yun Yap, Sharon Heng Yee Choy, Xiaona Wei, Yukti Choudhury, Wai Jin Tan, Luke Anthony Peng Yee Tan, Roger Sik Yin Foo, Suzanne Hui San Tan, Zenia Tiang, Chin Fong Wong, Poh Koon Koh, Min-Han Tan
Molecular Cancer Therapeutics 2017, 16 (9): 2035-2044
There is increasing preclinical evidence suggesting that metformin, an antidiabetic drug, has anticancer properties against various malignancies, including colorectal cancer. However, the majority of evidence, which was derived from cancer cell lines and xenografts, was likely to overestimate the benefit of metformin because these models are inadequate and require supraphysiologic levels of metformin. Here, we generated patient-derived xenograft (PDX) lines from 2 colorectal cancer patients to assess the properties of metformin and 5-fluorouracil (5-FU), the first-line drug treatment for colorectal cancer. Metformin (150 mg/kg) as a single agent inhibits the growth of both PDX tumors by at least 50% ( P < 0.05) when administered orally for 24 days. In one of the PDX models, metformin given concurrently with 5-FU (25 mg/kg) leads to an 85% ( P = 0.054) growth inhibition. Ex vivo culture of organoids generated from PDX demonstrates that metformin inhibits growth by executing metabolic changes to decrease oxygen consumption and activating AMPK-mediated pathways. In addition, we also performed genetic characterizations of serial PDX samples with corresponding parental tissues from patients using next-generation sequencing (NGS). Our pilot NGS study demonstrates that PDX represents a useful platform for analysis in cancer research because it demonstrates high fidelity with parental tumor. Furthermore, NGS analysis of PDX may be useful to determine genetic identifiers of drug response. This is the first preclinical study using PDX and PDX-derived organoids to investigate the efficacy of metformin in colorectal cancer. Mol Cancer Ther; 16(9); 2035-44. ©2017 AACR .

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