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OncoTargets and therapy

Comparison of a mouse and a novel human scFv-SNAP-auristatin F drug conjugate with potent activity against EGFR-overexpressing human solid tumor cells.


PMID 28740407

Abstract

Antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) can deliver toxins to specific targets such as tumor cells. They have shown promise in preclinical/clinical development but feature stoichiometrically undefined chemical linkages, and those based on full-size antibodies achieve only limited tumor penetration. SNAP-tag technology can overcome these challenges by conjugating benzylguanine-modified toxins to single-chain fragment variables (scFvs) with 1:1 stoichiometry while preserving antigen binding. Two (human and mouse) scFv-SNAP fusion proteins recognizing the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) were expressed in HEK 293T cells. The purified fusion proteins were conjugated to auristatin F (AURIF). Binding activity was confirmed by flow cytometry/immunohistochemistry, and cytotoxic activity was confirmed by cell viability/apoptosis and cell cycle arrest assays, and a novel microtubule dynamics disassembly assay was performed. Both ADCs bound specifically to their target cells in vitro and ex vivo, indicating that the binding activity of the scFv-SNAP fusions was unaffected by conjugation to AURIF. Cytotoxic assays confirmed that the ADCs induced apoptosis and cell cycle arrest at nanomolar concentrations and microtubule disassembly. The SNAP-tag technology provides a platform for the development of novel ADCs with defined conjugation sites and stoichiometry. We achieved the stable and efficient linkage of AURIF to human or murine scFvs using the SNAP-tag technology, offering a strategy to improve the development of personalized medicines.