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Int J Pharm. 2005 Nov 4;304(1-2):51-62. Epub 2005 Sep 19.

Investigation of antibody-coated liposomes as a new treatment for immune thrombocytopenia.

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Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, 457B Cooke Hall, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York, Buffalo, NY 14260, USA.


Immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) is an autoimmune disease that is mediated by anti-platelet antibodies. It is believed that anti-platelet antibody-opsonized platelets are eliminated through Fcgamma receptor-mediated and complement-mediated phagocytosis by macrophages of the reticuloendothelial system (RES). Polyclonal pooled immunoglobulin with high titer for the D-antigen of erythrocytes (i.e., anti-D) has been successfully used to ameliorate ITP. Based on the pathogenesis of ITP and based on the successful application of anti-D for the treatment of ITP, we hypothesized that antibody-coated liposomes may be used to inhibit Fcgamma receptor-mediated and complement-mediated phagocytosis, thereby increasing platelet counts in ITP. To test this hypothesis, we have developed a liposome preparation that is coated with a model monoclonal IgG1 antibody. Antibody-coated liposomes were found to inhibit complement deposition and macrophage phagocytosis in vitro. Furthermore, antibody-coated liposomes were also found to attenuate thrombocytopenia in a rat model of ITP, in a dose-dependent manner. The results suggest that antibody-coated liposomes may be used as 'decoy particles' to competitively inhibit the destruction of antibody-coated platelets; thus, antibody-coated liposomes may have value in the treatment of ITP.

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