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Biomaterials. 2013 Jul;34(20):4880-9. doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2013.03.046. Epub 2013 Apr 2.

Potent killing of HBV-related hepatocellular carcinoma by a chimeric protein of anti-HBsAg single-chain antibody and truncated Bid.

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1
The State Key Laboratory of Cancer Biology, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Fourth Military Medical University, Xi'an 710032, China.

Abstract

Targeted therapy is needed for hepatitis B virus (HBV)-mediated hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) which shows overexpression of HBV surface antigen (HBsAg). We previously developed scFv15, a human single-chain antibody against HBsAg. Here we tested the strategic feasibility of scFv15-mediated delivery of apoptotic effectors for HBsAg-targeted HCC therapy and application of HA2 motif of influenza hemagglutinin to enhance endosome escape and antitumor effect. A class of HBsAg-targeted immunoproapoptotic molecule was generated by sequentially fusing scFv15, the furin-cleavable motif from diphtheria toxin (Fdt), HA2 and a truncated apoptotic protein Bid (tBid). The resulting scFv15-Fdt-HA2-tBid was prokaryotically expressed and functionally characterized for HBsAg-binding capacity, endosome escape activity and antitumor effect as compared with scFv15-Fdt-tBid. Both scFv15-Fdt-HA2-tBid and scFv15-Fdt-tBid retained affinity and specificity for HBsAg, and bound and selectively killed HBsAg-positive HCC cells via apoptosis. Notably, the IC50 of scFv15-Fdt-HA2-tBid in HBsAg-positive PLC/PRF/5 cells was 10 times lower than that of scFv15-Fdt-tBid. In vivo imaging of antitumor activity demonstrated 95% growth inhibition of orthotopic HCC by scFv15-Fdt-HA2-tBid compared with 75% suppression by scFv15-Fdt-tBid. This study represents an extended application of the immunoproapoptotic strategy in the treatment of HBsAg-positive HCC and shows significant potential of HA2 as a functional enhancer for endosome-encapsulated antibody-conjugates.

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