Expression and activity of breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP) in de novo and relapsed acute myeloid leukemia

D.M. van der Kolk, E. Vellenga, G.L. Scheffer, M.R. Müller, S.E. Bates, R.J. Scheper, E.G.E. de Vries

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

123 Citations (Scopus)


Overexpression of the breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP) efflux pump in human cancer cell lines results in resistance to a variety of cytostatic agents. The aim of this study was to analyze BCRP protein expression and activity in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) samples and to determine whether it is up-regulated due to clonal selection at relapse/refractory disease. BCRP protein expression was measured flow cytometrically with the monoclonal antibodies BXP-34 and BXP-21 in 20 paired samples of de novo and relapsed/refractory AML. BXP-34/immunoglobulin G1 ratios were observed of 1.6 ± 0.5 (mean ± SD, range 0.8-2.7) and BXP-21/immunoglobulin G2a ratios of 4.9 ± 3.0 (range 1.1-14.5) in the patient samples versus 9.8 ± 6.8 and 6.5 ± 2.4, respectively, in the MCF-7 cell line. BCRP activity was determined flow cytometrically by measuring mitoxantrone accumulation in absence and presence of the inhibitor fumitremorgin C. Mitoxantrone accumulation, expressed as mean fluorescence intensity (MFI), varied between 44 and 761 MFI (227 ± 146 MFI) and correlated inversely with BCRP expression (r = 0.58, P <.001). Addition of fumitremorgin C showed a small increase in mitoxantrone accumulation (11 ± 29 MFI, n = 40) apart from the effect of PSC833 and MK-571. No consistent up-regulation of BCRP expression or activity was observed at relapse/refractory disease; some cases showed an increase and other cases a decrease at relapse. Relatively high BCRP expression correlated with immature immunophenotype, as determined by expression of the surface marker CD34 (r = 0.54, P = .001). In conclusion, this study shows that BCRP protein is expressed at low but variable levels in AML, especially in immature CD34+ cells. BCRP was not consistently up-regulated in relapsed/refractory AML
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3763-3770
JournalBlood : journal of the American Society of Hematology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2002


  • bone-marrow transplantation
  • multidrug-resistance
  • p-glycoprotein
  • cell-lines
  • mitoxantrone-resistant
  • half-transporter
  • overexpression
  • gene
  • mrp1
  • phenotype


Dive into the research topics of 'Expression and activity of breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP) in de novo and relapsed acute myeloid leukemia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this