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Cancer Res. 2015 Oct 1;75(19):4086-96. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-14-3773. Epub 2015 Sep 16.

Dll4 Blockade in Stromal Cells Mediates Antitumor Effects in Preclinical Models of Ovarian Cancer.

Author information

1
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Tarrytown, New York. frank.kuhnert@regeneron.com.
2
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Tarrytown, New York.

Abstract

The Notch ligand delta-like 4 (Dll4) has been identified as a promising target in tumor angiogenesis in preclinical studies, and Dll4 inhibitors have recently entered clinical trials for solid tumors, including ovarian cancers. In this study, we report the development of REGN421 (enoticumab), a fully human IgG1 monoclonal antibody that binds human Dll4 with sub-nanomolar affinity and inhibits Notch signaling. Administering REGN421 to immunodeficient mice engineered to express human Dll4 inhibited the growth of several human tumor xenografts in association with the formation of nonfunctional tumor blood vessels. In ovarian tumor xenograft models, Dll4 was expressed specifically by the tumor endothelium, and Dll4 blockade by human-specific or mouse-specific Dll4 antibodies exerted potent antitumor activity, which relied entirely on targeting Dll4 expressed by tumor stromal cells but not by the tumor cells themselves. However, Dll4 blockade reduced Notch signaling in both blood vessels and tumor cells surrounding the blood vessels, suggesting that endothelial-expressed Dll4 might induce Notch signaling in adjacent ovarian tumor cells. The antitumor effects of targeting Dll4 were augmented significantly by simultaneous inhibition of VEGF signaling, whereas this combined blockade reversed normal organ vascular changes induced by Dll4 blockade alone. Overall, our findings deepen the rationale for antibody-based strategies to target Dll4 in ovarian cancers, especially in combination with VEGF blockade.

PMID:
26377940
DOI:
10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-14-3773
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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