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J Natl Cancer Inst. 1988 Dec 21;80(20):1605-11.

Efficacy of antibodies to epidermal growth factor receptor against KB carcinoma in vitro and in nude mice.

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  • 1Department of Chemical Immunology, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel.


Iodine-125-labeled monoclonal antibody 108.4 (108.4 mAb), raised against the extracellular domain of the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor, was shown to visualize sc xenografts of human oral epidermoid carcinoma (KB) cells in nude mice. In vitro, although EGF caused an increase in the number of KB cell colonies (150% at a concentration of 160 mM), the anti-EGF receptor antibodies reduced clone formation. At a concentration at which EGF caused a 50% increase in colony number, the addition of a 100-fold molar excess of 108.4 mAb resulted in a decrease in the number of cell colonies to 20% of the original value. Therefore, the effect of antibody on the KB tumor was studied in vivo in three different modes of tumor transplantation. Antitumor activity was demonstrated first by retardation (versus controls) of the growth of tumor cells as sc xenografts (P greater than .017), then by prolongation of the life span of animals with the ip form of the tumor (P less than .001), and finally on an experimental lung metastasis by a reduction in the number and size of tumors (P less than .05). When the anti-EGF receptor antibodies were added together with cisplatin, the antitumor effect was greatly enhanced, suggesting that the toxic activity of these agents is synergistic (P less than .007). The antitumor effect persisted when animals were treated with the F(ab)'2 fragment of the antibody, although it was less efficient. The Fab fragment of the antibody, whose ability to bind to the cell-associated receptor was completely conserved, did not affect the growth of the tumor. The activity manifested by the F(ab)'2 fragment of the anti-EGF receptor antibodies suggested that the antitumor effect was not due to immune mechanisms requiring the Fc portion of the antibody.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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