EGFR-TKI acquired resistance in lung cancers harboring EGFR mutations in immunocompetent C57BL/6J mice

Hisao Higo, Kadoaki Ohashi, Go Makimoto, Kazuya Nishii, Kenichiro Kudo, Hiroe Kayatani, Hiromi Watanabe, Hirohisa Kano, Kiichiro Ninomiya, Katsuyuki Hotta, Yoshinobu Maeda, Katsuyuki Kiura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: Lung cancers harboring epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutations inevitably develop resistance to EGFR tyrosine-kinase inhibitors (EGFR-TKIs). Therefore, we sought to establish clinically relevant lung-cancer mouse models to achieve deep remission of cancers. Materials and methods: We previously established two transgenic lung-cancer mouse models harboring human EGFR exon 21 L858R substitution (hLR) and mouse Egfr exon 19 deletion (mDEL) in the C57BL/6 J background. Lung tumors from these two transgenic mouse strains were transplanted subcutaneously into BALB/c-nunu mice or C57BL/6 J mice. Results: The transplanted tumors developed the ability to grow on the subcutaneous tissue, peritoneum, or lung of C57BL/6 J mice. While hLR tumors could grow only in C57BL/6 J mice carrying the transgene, mDEL tumors could grow in wild-type C57BL/6 J mice. The tumors maintained EGFR-dependency, and, thus, the EGFR-TKI gefitinib inhibited tumor growth; however, similar to human lung cancers, hLR and mDEL tumors acquired resistance in 60 and 200 days, respectively, following gefitinib administration. Secondary EGFR T790 M mutation in hLR tumors and secondary Egfr T792I mutation in mDEL tumors developed; however, no MET activation was detected. Accordingly, the third-generation EGFR-TKI osimertinib effectively inhibited gefitinib-resistant tumors in vivo. Furthermore, gefitinib-resistant tumors developed resistance to osimertinib in 100 days. Conclusion: These syngeneic lung-cancer mouse models harboring EGFR mutations are suitable for studying the drug-resistance mechanisms and the role of the tumor microenvironment. Further investigation with these mouse models is warranted for developing next-generation treatment strategies for lung cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86-93
Number of pages8
JournalLung Cancer
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019


  • Acquired resistance
  • EGFR mutations
  • Osimertinib
  • Transgenic mice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cancer Research


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