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Methods Mol Biol. 2010;651:157-75. doi: 10.1007/978-1-60761-786-0_10.

Pharmacology of anti-CD3 diphtheria immunotoxin in CD3 positive T-cell lymphoma trials.

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Cancer Research Institute, Scott and White Memorial Hospital, Temple, TX, USA.


Anti-CD3 recombinant diphtheria immunotoxin, A-dmDT(390)-bisFv(UCHT1), consists of the catalytic and translocation domains of diphtheria toxin fused to two single chain Fv fragments of an anti-CD3epsilon monoclonal antibody (UCHT1). A-dmDT(390)-bisFv(UCHT1) is capable of killing CD3(+) T-lymphoma cells and normal T cells specifically in the femtomolar concentration range. To study pharmacology of A-dmDT(390)-bisFv(UCHT1) in patients with CD3(+) T-cell lymphoma in a phase I clinical trial, (1) highly sensitive bioassay using Jurkat cells for measuring drug levels, (2) ELISA for measuring anti-DT antibody titer, and (3) 5-color FACS analysis method for measuring changes of subtype T-cell population were developed. In addition to evaluating drug efficacy and pharmacokinetics in patients, it is important to correlate pre-existing anti-DT antibody levels with maximum drug concentration in serum and extent of T-cell depletion because pre-existing anti-DT antibodies due to DPT (Diphtheria, Pertussis, and Tetanus) immunization can neutralize diphtheria immunotoxin. We observed that at the lowest treatment dose (2.5 microg/kg: twice daily for 4 days) A-dmDT(390)-bisFv(UCHT1) depletes greater than 99.0% of normal T cells in all six patients for a short period of time (2-3 days) and that there is no association of C (max) and extent of T-cell depletion with the pre-existing anti-DT antibody titer.

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