Targeted polytherapy in small cell sarcoma and its association with doxorubicin

S. N. Dumont, D. Yang, A. G. Dumont, D. Reynoso, J. Y. Blay, J. C. Trent

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


A paradigm shift has occurred in the last decade from chemotherapy to targeted therapy for the management of many patients with advanced sarcoma. This work identifies a combination of targeted agents and doxorubicin that are effective against small cell sarcoma cell lines.Three small cell sarcoma cell lines were studied: RD18 (rhabdomyosarcoma), A204 (undifferentiated sarcoma) and TC 71 (Ewing's sarcoma). Each cell line was exposed to increasing concentrations of vorinostat (HDAC inhibitor), 17-DMAG (HSP90 inhibitor), abacavir (anti-telomerase) or sorafenib (tyrosine kinase inhibitor) alone, combined with one another, or combined with doxorubicin. Cell viability, cell cycle analysis and apoptosis were assessed by MTS assay, propidium iodide-Annexin V staining, and caspase 3/7 activity, respectively. The Chou and Talalay combination index (CI) was used to determine whether the effects were additive (CI=1), synergistic (CI<1) or antagonistic (CI>1).In monotherapy, targeted agents achieved 30-90% reductions in viability, with the exception of abacavir. Dual-targeted combination therapies with vorinostat, sorafenib and 17-DMAG demonstrated synergy. Abacavir was antagonistic with every other drug and was not further studied. Both vorinostat and 17-DMAG synergized with doxorubicin, achieving 60% cell killing compared to 12% with doxorubicin alone. No synergy was observed for sorafenib with doxorubicin. The triple therapy vorinostat, 17-DMAG and doxorubicin did not show synergy, but increased the subG1 population at 24H, from 30% to 70% compared to monotherapies with an increase in apoptosis.This work provides evidence of synergy of combinations of vorinostat, 17-DMAG and sorafenib in small cell sarcoma. In addition to doxorubicin, these combinations enhance doxorubicin cytotoxicity at therapeutically relevant concentrations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1458-1468
Number of pages11
JournalMolecular Oncology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Dec 1 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Cell line
  • Combination
  • Doxorubicin
  • Small cell sarcoma
  • Targeted therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Genetics
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Targeted polytherapy in small cell sarcoma and its association with doxorubicin'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this