Mubritinib Targets the Electron Transport Chain Complex I and Reveals the Landscape of OXPHOS Dependency in Acute Myeloid Leukemia


To identify therapeutic targets in acute myeloid leukemia (AML), we chemically interrogated 200 sequenced primary specimens. Mubritinib, a known ERBB2 inhibitor, elicited strong anti-leukemic effects in vitro and in vivo. In the context of AML, mubritinib functions through ubiquinone-dependent inhibition of electron transport chain (ETC) complex I activity. Resistance to mubritinib characterized normal CD34+ hematopoietic cells and chemotherapy-sensitive AMLs, which displayed transcriptomic hallmarks of hypoxia. Conversely, sensitivity correlated with mitochondrial function-related gene expression levels and characterized a large subset of chemotherapy-resistant AMLs with oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) hyperactivity. Altogether, our work thus identifies an ETC complex I inhibitor and reveals the genetic landscape of OXPHOS dependency in AML.,

Cancer Cell
Sébastien Lemieux
Sébastien Lemieux
Principal Investigator

Principal Investigator, Functional and Structural Bioinformatics Research Unit, IRIC | Scientific direction of the Bioinformatics platform | Associate Professor, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, Université de Montréal