Src homology 2 domain-containing phosphatase (SHP2), a ubiquitously expressed non-receptor tyrosine phosphatase, plays a critical role in the regulation of the MAPK signaling pathway and cellular proliferation. Activating mutations in SHP2 are associated with the development of multiple malignancies including leukemia, lung cancer and neuroblastoma. In addition, SHP2 promotes the conversion of oncogenic KRAS to its active GTP-bound state and it’s inhibition can enhance efficacy of GDP-KRASG12C inhibitors as well as other MAPK pathway inhibitors (RAF, MEK and ERK) which have suboptimal clinical efficacy as single agents. As a result, inhibition of SHP2 through genetic manipulation or pharmacological means has been shown to suppress tumor growth and presents an attractive potential avenue for the treatment of malignancies as monotherapy or in combination with other MAPK/PI3K inhibitors. Here we describe BBP-398, a potent, orally bioavailable allosteric small molecule inhibitor of SHP2. BBP-398 displays high selectivity against other phosphatases, kinases, GPCRs, transporters and hERG. Predicted human PK properties show good oral bioavailability with half-life of ~12-16 hours enabling continuous daily dosing and optimal therapeutic index in combination with other targeted therapeutics. In cellular assays, BBP-398 demonstrates potent pERK/DUSP6 inhibition and loss of viability across a panel of cell lines with active MAPK signaling, such as mutant EGFR and KRASG12C. In vivo, BBP-398 strongly suppresses RAS-ERK signaling in RTK- or RAS-driven xenografts. In the EGFR-dependent non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) HCC827 and esophageal squamous cell carcinoma KYSE-520 xenograft models, BBP-398 drives dose dependent efficacy consistent with the level of target inhibition. Detailed analysis of tumor response shows that efficacy is driven by maintaining better than 50% inhibition of pERK for most of the dosing interval. In addition to its strong single agent activity, BBP-398 also leads to enhanced efficacy in vitro and in vivo when used in combination with targeted therapeutics against driver MAPK genetic alterations, such as KRAS, EGFR or MET. Combination targeting, such as with the GDP-KRASG12C inhibitor sotorasib in the NSCLC NCI-H358 xenograft model, or with the mutant EGFR inhibitor osimertinib in the HCC827 erlotinib resistant (ER) xenograft model, drives strong suppression of MAPK activity and results in tumor regressions. Collectively, these findings highlight that SHP2 inhibition is a promising molecular therapeutic strategy in cancer which can potentially strongly suppress tumor growth as a single agent or in combination with other MAPK pathway inhibitors. Given its preclinical properties and projected favorable clinical pharmacokinetic profile, BBP-398 is currently being evaluated in a Phase 1/1b trial in patients with advanced solid tumors (NCT04528836).
Citation Format: James P. Stice, Sofia Donovan, Yuting Sun, Nancy Kohl, Barbara Czako, Faika Mseeh, Paul Leonard, Anna Wade, Justin Lim, Phil Jones, Eli Wallace, Kerstin Sinkevicius, Pedro Beltran. BBP-398, a potent, small molecule inhibitor of SHP2, enhances the response of established NSCLC xenografts to KRASG12C and mutEGFR inhibitors [abstract]. In: Proceedings of the AACR-NCI-EORTC Virtual International Conference on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics; 2021 Oct 7-10. Philadelphia (PA): AACR; Mol Cancer Ther 2021;20(12 Suppl):Abstract nr P207.