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Protein Eng Des Sel. 2014 Oct;27(10):331-7. doi: 10.1093/protein/gzu040.

A fusogenic dengue virus-derived peptide enhances antitumor efficacy of an antibody-ribonuclease fusion protein targeting the EGF receptor.

Author information

1
Department of Medical Oncology, National Center for Tumor Diseases, Heidelberg University Hospital, Im Neuenheimer Feld 460, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany.
2
Institute of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Kurt-Mothes-Str. 3, 06120 Halle, Germany.
3
Division of Experimental Neurosurgery, Department of Neurosurgery, University of Heidelberg, Im Neuenheimer Feld 400, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany Molecular Cell Biology Group, ENT Department, University of Heidelberg, Im Neuenheimer Feld 400, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany.
4
Molecular Cell Biology Group, ENT Department, University of Heidelberg, Im Neuenheimer Feld 400, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany.
5
Institute of Cell Biology and Immunology, University of Stuttgart, Allmandring 31, 70569 Stuttgart, Germany.
6
Department of Medical Oncology, National Center for Tumor Diseases, Heidelberg University Hospital, Im Neuenheimer Feld 460, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany Present address: Immunotherapy Program, National Center for Tumor Diseases, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Im Neuenheimer Feld 280, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany.
7
Department of Medical Oncology, National Center for Tumor Diseases, Heidelberg University Hospital, Im Neuenheimer Feld 460, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany juergen.krauss@nct-heidelberg.de.

Abstract

Due to its frequent overexpression in a variety of solid tumors the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) is a well-established target for therapeutic interventions in epithelial cancers. In order to target EGFR in head and neck cancer, we have generated a ribonuclease (RNase) fusion protein comprising a humanized anti-EGFR antibody single-chain Fv fragment (scFv) and Ranpirnase, an RNase from Rana pipiens. Fusion of Ranpirnase to the N-terminus of the scFv via a flexible glycine-serine linker (G4S)3 resulted in very poor cytotoxicity of the fusion protein. As endosomal accumulation and lysosomal degradation have been reported to diminish the antitumor efficacy of ribonuclease or toxin-based immunoagents, we explored a fusion peptide from dengue virus that has been reported to be involved in the endosomal escape of the virus. This peptide was introduced as a linker between Ranpirnase and the scFv moiety. The modified immunoRNase exhibited exceptionally high cytotoxicity toward EGFR-expressing head and neck cell lines without affecting specificity. These results indicate that endosomal entrapment needs to be considered for Ranpirnase-based immunoagents and might be overcome by the use of tailored transduction domains from viral proteins.

KEYWORDS:

EGFR; Ranpirnase; dengue virus; endosomal escape; immunoRNase

PMID:
25301960
DOI:
10.1093/protein/gzu040
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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