A HUWE1 defect causes PARP inhibitor resistance by modulating the BRCA1-∆11q splice variant.
de Bono, JS
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Although PARP inhibitors (PARPi) now form part of the standard-of-care for the treatment of homologous recombination defective cancers, de novo and acquired resistance limits their overall effectiveness. Previously, overexpression of the BRCA1-∆11q splice variant has been shown to cause PARPi resistance. How cancer cells achieve increased BRCA1-∆11q expression has remained unclear. Using isogenic cells with different BRCA1 mutations, we show that reduction in HUWE1 leads to increased levels of BRCA1-∆11q and PARPi resistance. This effect is specific to cells able to express BRCA1-∆11q (e.g. BRCA1 exon 11 mutant cells) and is not seen in BRCA1 mutants that cannot express BRCA1-∆11q, nor in BRCA2 mutant cells. As well as increasing levels of BRCA1-∆11q protein in exon 11 mutant cells, HUWE1 silencing also restores RAD51 nuclear foci and platinum salt resistance. HUWE1 catalytic domain mutations were also seen in a case of PARPi resistant, BRCA1 exon 11 mutant, high grade serous ovarian cancer. These results suggest how elevated levels of BRCA1-∆11q and PARPi resistance can be achieved, identify HUWE1 as a candidate biomarker of PARPi resistance for assessment in future clinical trials and illustrate how some PARPi resistance mechanisms may only operate in patients with particular BRCA1 mutations.
Poly(ADP-ribose) Polymerase Inhibitors
Drug Resistance, Neoplasm
Tumor Suppressor Proteins
Prote & Metabolomics Fac
PrCa Targeted Therapy
Directorate Breast Canc
License start date
Oncogene, 2023, 42 (36), pp. 2701 - 2709