Our paper in Journal of Translational Medicine shows that combination of dasatinib and other kinase inhibitors with a subtherapeutic anti‐hTNF dose effectively treats arthritis pathology.
Combination of subtherapeutic anti-TNF dose with dasatinib restores clinical and molecular arthritogenic profiles better than standard anti-TNF treatment
New medications for Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) have emerged in the last decades, including Disease Modifying Antirheumatic Drugs (DMARDs) and biologics. However, there is no known cure, since a significant proportion of patients remain or become non-responders to current therapies. The development of new mode-of-action treatment schemes involving combination therapies could prove successful for the treatment of a greater number of RA patients.
We investigated the effect of the Tyrosine Kinase inhibitors (TKIs) dasatinib and bosutinib, on the human TNF-dependent Tg197 arthritis mouse model. The inhibitors were administered either as a monotherapy or in combination with a subtherapeutic dose of anti-hTNF biologics and their therapeutic effect was assessed clinically, histopathologically as well as via gene expression analysis and was compared to that of an efficient TNF monotherapy.
Dasatinib and, to a lesser extent, bosutinib inhibited the production of TNF and proinflammatory chemokines from arthritogenic synovial fibroblasts. Dasatinib, but not bosutinib, also ameliorated significantly and in a dose-dependent manner both the clinical and histopathological signs of Tg197 arthritis. Combination of dasatinib with a subtherapeutic dose of anti-hTNF biologic agents, resulted in a synergistic inhibitory effect abolishing all arthritis symptoms. Gene expression analysis of whole joint tissue of Tg197 mice revealed that the combination of dasatinib with a low subtherapeutic dose of Infliximab most efficiently restores the pathogenic gene expression profile to that of the healthy state compared to either treatment administered as a monotherapy.
Our findings show that dasatinib exhibits a therapeutic effect in TNF-driven arthritis and can act in synergy with a subtherapeutic anti-hTNF dose to effectively treat the clinical and histopathological signs of the pathology. The combination of dasatinib and anti-hTNF exhibits a distinct mode of action in restoring the arthritogenic gene signature to that of a healthy profile. Potential clinical applications of combination therapies with kinase inhibitors and anti-TNF agents may provide an interesting alternative to high-dose anti-hTNF monotherapy and increase the number of patients responding to treatment.