Background: The receptor encoded by the MET oncogene and its ligand Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF) are at the core of the invasive-metastatic behavior. In a number of instances genetic alterations result in ligand-independent onset of malignancy (MET addiction). More frequently, ligand stimulation of wild-type MET contributes to progression toward metastasis (MET expedience). Thus, while MET inhibitors alone are effective in the first case, combination therapy with ligand inhibitors is required in the second condition. Methods: In this paper, we generated hybrid molecules gathering HGF and MET inhibitory properties. This has been achieved by ‘head-to-tail’ or ‘tail-to-head’ fusion of a single chain Fab derived from the DN30 MET antibody with a recombinant ‘ad-hoc’ engineered MET extracellular domain (decoyMET), encompassing the HGF binding site but lacking the DN30 epitope. Results: The hybrid molecules correctly bind MET and HGF, inhibit HGF-induced MET downstream signaling, and quench HGF-driven biological responses, such as growth, motility and invasion, in cancer cells of different origin. Two metastatic models were generated in mice knocked-in by the human HGF gene: (i) orthotopic transplantation of pancreatic cancer cells; (ii) subcutaneous injection of primary cells derived from a cancer of unknown primary. Treatment with hybrid molecules strongly affects time of onset, number, and size of metastatic lesions. Conclusion: These results provide a strategy to treat metastatic dissemination driven by the HGF/MET axis.

A receptor-antibody hybrid hampering MET-driven metastatic spread

Modica C.
First
;
Basilico C.
;
Comoglio P. M.;Vigna E.
Last
2021

Abstract

Background: The receptor encoded by the MET oncogene and its ligand Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF) are at the core of the invasive-metastatic behavior. In a number of instances genetic alterations result in ligand-independent onset of malignancy (MET addiction). More frequently, ligand stimulation of wild-type MET contributes to progression toward metastasis (MET expedience). Thus, while MET inhibitors alone are effective in the first case, combination therapy with ligand inhibitors is required in the second condition. Methods: In this paper, we generated hybrid molecules gathering HGF and MET inhibitory properties. This has been achieved by ‘head-to-tail’ or ‘tail-to-head’ fusion of a single chain Fab derived from the DN30 MET antibody with a recombinant ‘ad-hoc’ engineered MET extracellular domain (decoyMET), encompassing the HGF binding site but lacking the DN30 epitope. Results: The hybrid molecules correctly bind MET and HGF, inhibit HGF-induced MET downstream signaling, and quench HGF-driven biological responses, such as growth, motility and invasion, in cancer cells of different origin. Two metastatic models were generated in mice knocked-in by the human HGF gene: (i) orthotopic transplantation of pancreatic cancer cells; (ii) subcutaneous injection of primary cells derived from a cancer of unknown primary. Treatment with hybrid molecules strongly affects time of onset, number, and size of metastatic lesions. Conclusion: These results provide a strategy to treat metastatic dissemination driven by the HGF/MET axis.
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Fusion proteins; HGF; MET; Metastasis; Targeted therapy; A549 Cells; Animals; Binding Sites, Antibody; Cell Line, Tumor; Cell Proliferation; Female; Hepatocyte Growth Factor; Humans; Immunoconjugates; Immunoglobulin Fab Fragments; Mice; Mice, SCID; Neoplasm Metastasis; Neoplasms; Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-met; Rats; Rats, Sprague-Dawley; Recombinant Proteins; Xenograft Model Antitumor Assays
Modica C.; Basilico C.; Chiriaco C.; Borrelli N.; Comoglio P.M.; Vigna E.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2318/1823368
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