Tris DBA palladium is highly effective against growth and metastasis of pancreatic cancer in an orthotopic model

Begoña Díaz, Katherine T. Ostapoff, Jason E. Toombs, Jason Lo, Michael Y. Bonner, Adam Curatolo, Volkan Adsay, Rolf A. Brekken, Jack L. Arbiser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Pancreatic carcinoma ranks among the most lethal of human cancers. Besides late detection, other factors contribute to its lethality, including a high degree of chemoresistance, invasion, and distant metastases. Currently, the mainstay of therapy involves resection of local disease in a minority of patients (Whipple procedure) and systemic gemcitabine. While systemic chemotherapy has some benefit, even with optimal treatment, the five year survival after diagnosis is dismal. Thus, treatment of pancreatic carcinoma remains a tremendous unmet need. The organometallic compound tris DBA palladium is a potent inhibitor of N-myristoyltransferase 1 (NMT1), an enzyme that catalyzes the transfer of myristate to protein substrates. This compound is highly effective in vivo against murine models of melanoma with both mutant and wild type b-RAF genotypes. Based upon the signaling similarities between melanoma and pancreatic carcinoma, we evaluated the efficacy of tris DBA palladium in vitro and in vivo against pancreatic carcinoma. We found that tris DBA palladium decreased proliferation and colony formation of pancreatic cancer cells in vitro. In an orthotopic mouse model, tris DBA palladium was highly active in inhibiting growth, ascites production, and distant metastases in vivo. Furthermore, tris DBA palladium impaired chemotaxis and inhibited cilia formation in Pan02 cells in a NMT1-dependent manner. We propose that NMT1 is a novel regulator of cilia formation and tris DBA palladium a novel inhibitor of cilia formation and metastasis in pancreatic cancer. Thus, further evaluation of tris DBA palladium for the treatment of pancreatic cancer is warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51569-51580
Number of pages12
Issue number32
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016


  • Chemotaxis
  • Metastasis
  • NMT1
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Tris DBA palladium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology


Dive into the research topics of 'Tris DBA palladium is highly effective against growth and metastasis of pancreatic cancer in an orthotopic model'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this