DOI: 10.1158/1538-7445.kidney23-ia007 ISSN:

Abstract IA007: A novel strategy to trigger ferroptosis in kidney cancer

Mei Yee Koh
  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


Clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC), the most common form of kidney cancer, is typically initiated by inactivation of the von Hippel Lindau (VHL) gene resulting in constitutive activation of the hypoxia inducible factors, HIF-1α and HIF-2α. VHL loss and HIF activation promote lipid accumulation that increases the sensitivity of ccRCC cells to ferroptosis. Here, we reveal Iron Sulfur Cluster Assembly 2 (ISCA2) as a novel molecular target whose inhibition decreases HIF-1/2α levels and induces ferroptosis specifically in VHL-deficient cells. ISCA2 is a component of the late mitochondrial Iron Sulfur Cluster (L-ISC) assembly complex and ISCA2 inhibition either pharmacologically or using siRNA triggers the iron starvation response, resulting in iron/metals overload and death via ferroptosis. ISCA2 inhibition also decreases HIF-2α protein levels by blocking iron-responsive element (IRE)-dependent translation, and at higher concentrations, also decreases HIF-1α translation through unknown mechanisms. Strikingly, pharmacological inhibition of ISCA2 using a novel, orally available ISCA2 inhibitor significantly reduced ccRCC xenograft growth in vivo, decreased HIF-α levels and increased lipid peroxidation, suggesting increased ferroptosis in vivo. Thus, the targeting of ISCA2 may be a promising therapeutic strategy to inhibit HIF-1/2α and to induce ferroptosis in pVHL deficient cells.

Citation Format: Mei Yee Koh. A novel strategy to trigger ferroptosis in kidney cancer [abstract]. In: Proceedings of the AACR Special Conference: Advances in Kidney Cancer Research; 2023 Jun 24-27; Austin, Texas. Philadelphia (PA): AACR; Cancer Res 2023;83(16 Suppl):Abstract nr IA007.

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