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J Cell Mol Med. 2010 Dec;14(12):2827-39. doi: 10.1111/j.1582-4934.2009.00930.x.

Transport characteristics of a novel peptide platform for CNS therapeutics.

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Laboratoire de Médecine Moléculaire, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal, Canada Angiochem, Inc., Montréal, Canada.


New and effective therapeutics that cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB) are critically needed for treatment of many brain diseases. We characterize here a novel drug development platform that is broadly applicable for the development of new therapeutics with increased brain penetration. The platform is based on the Angiopep-2 peptide, a sequence derived from ligands that bind to low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein-1 (LRP-1), a receptor expressed on the BBB. Fluorescent imaging studies of a Cy5.5Angiopep-2 conjugate and immunohistochemical studies of injected Angiopep-2 in mice demonstrated efficient transport across the BBB into brain parenchyma and subsequent co-localization with the neuronal nuclei-selective marker NeuN and the glial marker glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). Uptake of [(¹²⁵I]-Angiopep-2 into brain endothelial cells occurred by a saturable mechanism involving LRP-1. The primary sequence and charge of Angiopep-2 were crucial for its passage across the BBB. Overall, the results demonstrate the significant potential of this platform for the development of novel neurotherapeutics.

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