Potential of Targeting Adipocytes in Treatment of Myeloma
Posted: Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Bone marrow adipocytes (BMAs) seem to support multiple myeloma cells by providing free fatty acids to help their growth and evolution, although this relationship and how BMAs may “modify the multiple myeloma cell phenotype [has been] relatively unexplored,” stated the authors of a review in the Journal of Bone Mineral Research Plus. Their exploration was conducted by Michaela R. Reagan, PhD, of Maine Medical Research Institute in Scarborough. Particular proteins in multiple myeloma cells, the team noted, are responsible for fatty acid uptake and oxidation.
“If the pathways through which BMAs affect multiple myeloma cells can be determined,” posited the investigators, “therapeutically targeting the BMAs [could] prove…transformative in the clinic.” The underlying characteristics of BMAs that intrigued Dr. Reagan and colleagues with their potential include their physical proximity to multiple myeloma cells, active endocrine function, potential role in bone disease, and capacity for direct cell-to-cell communication. In addition, BMAs may correlate with two multiple myeloma risk factors: aging and obesity.
In the field of cancer metabolism generally, fatty acid oxidation “has become a stimulating area of interest,” noted the team. For patients with multiple myeloma specifically, “targeting enzymes involved in fatty acid metabolism or transport, such as CPT1 or FABP4, could be a promising treatment option.” Preclinically in leukemia, this strategy has already been proved to be effective, they stated.
“Targeting fatty acid metabolism has great potential to constrain multiple myeloma progression,” the investigators concluded.
Disclosure: The study authors reported no conflicts of interest.