Small cell lung cancer (SCLC) has an overall prognosis of 6%, and novel therapies are desperately needed. Previously, we had shown c-Met receptor tyrosine kinase can be an important therapeutic target in SCLC. c-Met/HGF has been shown to be involved in proliferation, cell motility and migration, invasion, angiogenesis and metastasis of many solid tumors. Previously, we had identified mutations of c-Met in the juxtamembrane (JM) and semaphorin (Sema) domains of c-Met, and showed them to be gain-of-function mutations. Using C. elegans modeling system, we show that the JM domain c-Met mutants cause a dramatic phenotype related to the vulva, and is further activated with nicotine (an important component of cigarette smoke, and implicated in the pathogenesis for SCLC). In our initial proposal, we had looked at primary SCLC tumor tissues, but had not determined the mutation or amplification of c-Met in SCLC in primary tumor tissue as compared to metastatic tumor tissue (such as lymph nodes and distant metastases);this would be important to study since SCLC is highly metastatic. We had also determined specific inhibitors against c-Met, for which there are now several Phase I clinical trials. In our investigations, most recently, we have identified that c-Met can be activated by HGF, and the phosphorylated form can localize to the nucleus. Within the nucleus, phospho-c-Met can interact with various proteins such as topoisomerase-I and the transcription factor Pax 5. Interestingly, Pax 5 is expressed in SCLC and not non-SCLC;whereas, Pax 8 is expressed in non-SCLC and not SCLC. We now show that Pax 5 is a transcription factor for the c-Met gene in SCLC. Thus, to further study the role of c- Met in SCLC, we would propose to: 1. Determine the expression, mutational and amplification patterns of c-Met in primary versus metastatic SCLC;2. Determine the role of nuclear c-Met in SCLC;3. Determine the combinatorial targeting of c- Met, Pax5, and Topoisomerase-I in SCLC. With our initial success in defining the role of c-Met/HGF axis in SCLC, development of a number of biological and biochemical tools to study the c-Met pathway in SCLC, and new observations for c-Met in SCLC, we will dramatically impact on the biology and therapy for SCLC.

Public Health Relevance

Small cell lung cancer (SCLC) is a difficult disease and novel targets are desperately needed. We have identified that c-Met receptor tyrosine kinase can be activated, mutated, or amplified, and can shuttle to the nucleus. In the nucleus, it binds to different proteins such as Pax5 and topoisomerase-I, and the studies proposed will dissect out mechanisms for this. Ultimately, we propose to bring to fruition combination therapies using these molecules.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Research Project (R01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Developmental Therapeutics Study Section (DT)
Program Officer
Arya, Suresh
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of Chicago
Internal Medicine/Medicine
Schools of Medicine
United States
Zip Code
Kawada, Ichiro; Hasina, Rifat; Arif, Qudsia et al. (2014) Dramatic antitumor effects of the dual MET/RON small-molecule inhibitor LY2801653 in non-small cell lung cancer. Cancer Res 74:884-95
Sadiq, Ahad A; Salgia, Ravi (2013) MET as a possible target for non-small-cell lung cancer. J Clin Oncol 31:1089-96
Diamond, Jennifer R; Salgia, Ravi; Varella-Garcia, Marileila et al. (2013) Initial clinical sensitivity and acquired resistance to MET inhibition in MET-mutated papillary renal cell carcinoma. J Clin Oncol 31:e254-8
Hasina, Rifat; Mollberg, Nathan; Kawada, Ichiro et al. (2013) Critical role for the receptor tyrosine kinase EPHB4 in esophageal cancers. Cancer Res 73:184-94
Doci, Colleen L; Mankame, Tanmayi P; Langerman, Alexander et al. (2012) Characterization of NOL7 gene point mutations, promoter methylation, and protein expression in cervical cancer. Int J Gynecol Pathol 31:15-24
Surati, Mosmi; Robinson, Matthew; Nandi, Suvobroto et al. (2011) Proteomic characterization of non-small cell lung cancer in a comprehensive translational thoracic oncology database. J Clin Bioinforma 1:1-11
Sadiq, Ahad A; Geynisman, Daniel M; Salgia, Ravi (2011) Inhibition of MET receptor tyrosine kinase and its ligand hepatocyte growth factor. J Thorac Oncol 6:S1810-1
Surati, Mosmi; Robinson, Matthew; Nandi, Suvobroto et al. (2011) Generation of comprehensive thoracic oncology database--tool for translational research. J Vis Exp :
Salgia, Ravi; Hensing, Thomas; Campbell, Nicholas et al. (2011) Personalized treatment of lung cancer. Semin Oncol 38:274-83
Tretiakova, Maria; Salama, April K S; Karrison, Theodore et al. (2011) MET and phosphorylated MET as potential biomarkers in lung cancer. J Environ Pathol Toxicol Oncol 30:341-54

Showing the most recent 10 out of 53 publications