Cancer Chemotherapy and Pharmacology

, Volume 68, Issue 6, pp 1537–1546 | Cite as

Erufosine, an alkylphosphocholine, with differential toxicity to human cancer cells and bone marrow cells

  • Rebecca G. Bagley
  • Leslie Kurtzberg
  • Cecile Rouleau
  • Min Yao
  • Beverly A. Teicher
Original Article



To investigate the activity and myeloprotective properties of erufosine, a novel alkylphosphocholine (APC), on human malignant cells and normal bone marrow cells.


Human or mouse bone marrow cells were exposed to erufosine, miltefosine, perifosine, or edelfosine in CFU-GM assays. Human MDA-MB-231 breast carcinoma, Panc-1 pancreatic carcinoma, and RPMI8226 multiple myeloma cells were exposed to erufosine in colony formation assays. Colony formation of Panc-1 tumor cells and mouse bone marrow cells ex vivo were quantified following intravenous administration of erufosine to tumor-bearing mice. Western blotting methods were applied to human U87 glioblastoma cells exposed to erufosine to investigate Akt inhibition.


Erufosine was less toxic to human and mouse bone marrow cells than perifosine, miltefosine, and edelfosine and was equally toxic to human and mouse CFU-GM. The human cancer cells MDA-MB-231 breast, Panc-1 pancreatic, and RPMI8226 MM cells were more sensitive to erufosine in a colony formation assay than were human bone marrow cells generating an approximately tenfold differential in IC90 values. Erufosine injected intravenously significantly reduced Panc-1 tumor cell colony formation ex vivo but not mouse bone marrow CFU-GM. Erufosine inhibited Akt phosphorylation in human U87 glioblastoma cells.


Erufosine offers potential as a novel therapeutic for cancer with a reduced toxicity profile to bone marrow cells compared with other agents in this class. Human cancer cells were more sensitive to erufosine than human or mouse bone marrow cells indicating a favorable therapeutic window for erufosine.


Erufosine Alkylphosphocholine Lipid Bone marrow Cancer Toxicity 







Colony-forming unit–granulocyte– macrophage


Inhibitory concentration


Fetal bovine serum


Recombinant murine


Recombinant human






Chronic myeloid leukemia


Acute myeloid leukemia


Multiple myeloma


Conflict of interest



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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rebecca G. Bagley
    • 1
  • Leslie Kurtzberg
    • 1
  • Cecile Rouleau
    • 1
  • Min Yao
    • 1
  • Beverly A. Teicher
    • 1
  1. 1.Genzyme CorporationFraminghamUSA

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