PI3K{gamma}/{delta} and NOTCH1 cross-regulate pathways that define the T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia disease signature

PI3K/AKT and NOTCH1 signaling pathways are frequently dysregulated in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemias (T-ALL). Although we have shown that the combined activities of the class I PI3K isoforms p110 and p110 play a major role in the development and progression of PTEN null T-ALL, it has yet to be determined whether their contribution to leukemogenic programing is unique from that associated with NOTCH1 activation. Using a Lmo2-driven mouse model of T-ALL in which both the PI3K/AKT and NOTCH1 pathways are aberrantly upregulated, we now demonstrate that the combined activities of PI3K/ have both overlapping and distinct roles from NOTCH1 in generating T-ALL disease signature and in promoting tumor cell growth. Treatment of diseased animals with either a dual PI3K/ or a -secretase inhibitor (GSI) reduced tumor burden, prolonged survival, and induced proapoptotic pathways. Consistent with their similar biological effects, both inhibitors downregulated genes involved in cMYC-dependent metabolism in gene set enrichment analyses. Furthermore, overexpression of cMYC in mice or T-ALL cell lines conferred resistance to both inhibitors, suggesting a point of pathway convergence. Of note, interrogation of transcriptional regulators and analysis of mitochondrial function showed that PI3K/ activity played a greater role in supporting the disease signature and critical bioenergetic pathways. Results provide insight into the interrelationship between T-ALL oncogenic networks and the therapeutic efficacy of dual PI3K/ inhibition in the context of NOTCH1 and cMYC signaling.

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