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J Biol Chem. 2011 Sep 2;286(35):30769-79. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M111.267997. Epub 2011 Jul 5.

Molecular and therapeutic characterization of anti-ectodysplasin A receptor (EDAR) agonist monoclonal antibodies.

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Department of Biochemistry, University of Lausanne, CH-1066 Epalinges, Switzerland.


The TNF family ligand ectodysplasin A (EDA) and its receptor EDAR are required for proper development of skin appendages such as hair, teeth, and eccrine sweat glands. Loss of function mutations in the Eda gene cause X-linked hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia (XLHED), a condition that can be ameliorated in mice and dogs by timely administration of recombinant EDA. In this study, several agonist anti-EDAR monoclonal antibodies were generated that cross-react with the extracellular domains of human, dog, rat, mouse, and chicken EDAR. Their half-life in adult mice was about 11 days. They induced tail hair and sweat gland formation when administered to newborn EDA-deficient Tabby mice, with an EC(50) of 0.1 to 0.7 mg/kg. Divalency was necessary and sufficient for this therapeutic activity. Only some antibodies were also agonists in an in vitro surrogate activity assay based on the activation of the apoptotic Fas pathway. Activity in this assay correlated with small dissociation constants. When administered in utero in mice or at birth in dogs, agonist antibodies reverted several ectodermal dysplasia features, including tooth morphology. These antibodies are therefore predicted to efficiently trigger EDAR signaling in many vertebrate species and will be particularly suited for long term treatments.

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