[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Notch proteins are transmembrane receptors that normally adopt a resting state poised to undergo activating proteolysis upon ligand engagement. Receptor quiescence is maintained by three LIN12/Notch repeats (LNRs), which wrap around a heterodimerization domain (HD) divided by furin cleavage at site S1 during maturation. Ligand binding initiates signaling by inducing sensitivity of the HD to proteolysis at the regulated S2 cleavage site. Here, we used hydrogen exchange mass spectrometry to examine the solution dynamics of the Notch1 negative regulatory region in autoinhibited states before and after S1 cleavage, in a proteolytically sensitive "on" state, and in a complex with an inhibitory antibody. Conversion to the "on" state leads to accelerated deuteration in the S2 region and in nearby secondary structural elements within the HD. In contrast, complexation with the inhibitory antibody retards deuteration around the S2 site. Together, these studies reveal how S2 site exposure is promoted by receptor activation and suppressed by inhibitory antibodies.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Notch receptors normally play a key role in guiding a variety of cell fate decisions during development and differentiation of metazoan organisms. On the other hand, dysregulation of Notch1 signaling is associated with many different types of cancer as well as tumor angiogenesis, making Notch1 a potential therapeutic target.
Here we report the in vitro activities of inhibitory Notch1 monoclonal antibodies derived from cell-based and solid-phase screening of a phage display library. Two classes of antibodies were found, one directed against the EGF-repeat region that encompasses the ligand-binding domain (LBD), and the second directed against the activation switch of the receptor, the Notch negative regulatory region (NRR). The antibodies are selective for Notch1, inhibiting Jag2-dependent signaling by Notch1 but not by Notch 2 and 3 in reporter gene assays, with EC(50) values as low as 5+/-3 nM and 0.13+/-0.09 nM for the LBD and NRR antibodies, respectively, and fail to recognize Notch4. While more potent, NRR antibodies are incomplete antagonists of Notch1 signaling. The antagonistic activity of LBD, but not NRR, antibodies is strongly dependent on the activating ligand. Both LBD and NRR antibodies bind to Notch1 on human tumor cell lines and inhibit the expression of sentinel Notch target genes, including HES1, HES5, and DTX1. NRR antibodies also strongly inhibit ligand-independent signaling in heterologous cells transiently expressing Notch1 receptors with diverse NRR "class I" point mutations, the most common type of mutation found in human T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL). In contrast, NRR antibodies failed to antagonize Notch1 receptors bearing rare "class II" or "class III" mutations, in which amino acid insertions generate a duplicated or constitutively sensitive metalloprotease cleavage site. Signaling in T-ALL cell lines bearing class I mutations is partially refractory to inhibitory antibodies as compared to cell-penetrating gamma-secretase inhibitors.
Antibodies that compete with Notch1 ligand binding or that bind to the negative regulatory region can act as potent inhibitors of Notch1 signaling. These antibodies may have clinical utility for conditions in which inhibition of signaling by wild-type Notch1 is desired, but are likely to be of limited value for treatment of T-ALLs associated with aberrant Notch1 activation.
PLoS ONE 02/2010; 5(2):e9094. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0009094 · 3.23 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Replication-defective adenoviruses have been utilized as candidate HIV vaccine vectors. Few studies have described the international epidemiology of pre-existing immunity to adenoviruses. We enrolled 1904 participants in a cross-sectional serological survey at seven sites in Africa, Brazil, and Thailand to assess neutralizing antibodies (NA) for adenovirus types Ad5, Ad6, Ad26 and Ad36. Clinical trial samples were used to assess NA titers from the US and Europe. The proportions of participants that were negative were 14.8% (Ad5), 31.5% (Ad6); 41.2% (Ad26) and 53.6% (Ad36). Adenovirus NA titers varied by geographic location and were higher in non-US and non-European settings, especially Thailand. In multivariate logistic regression analysis, geographic setting (non-US and non-European settings) was statistically significantly associated with having higher Ad5 titers; participants from Thailand had the highest odds of having high Ad5 titers (adjusted OR=3.53, 95% CI: 2.24, 5.57). Regardless of location, titers of Ad5NA were the highest and Ad36 NA were the lowest. Coincident Ad5/6 titers were lower than either Ad5 or Ad6 titers alone. Understanding pre-existing immunity to candidate vaccine vectors may contribute to the evaluation of vaccines in international populations.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Replication-defective recombinant adenoviruses (rAd) are used as vectors for vaccines as well as for gene therapy. To determine type-specific antibodies to adenovirus (Ad) serotypes 2, 5, 24, 34, and 35, we developed quantitative neutralization assays using recombinant adenoviruses with the secreted alkaline phosphatase (SEAP) reporter gene. Among the standardized parameters, the concentration of infectious and noninfectious adenoviral particles used in the assay is critical for a reliable comparison of data from different studies. The usefulness of this assay was demonstrated in a pilot epidemiologic study of 40 healthy individuals. In this study, the highest prevalence of antiadenovirus antibodies was found for the Ad2 serotype (82.5%), followed by Ad5 (35%). The prevalence of antiadenovirus antibodies for the serotypes 24, 34, and 35 was low (7.5%, 2.5%, and 0%, respectively). In addition, epidemiologic parameters such as gender and age were statistically evaluated. A positive association was found between age and the presence of anti-Ad5 antibodies. The assay was also useful for evaluating the presence of antiadenovirus antibodies in the design of vaccines using a rhesus monkey model. In this animal model, it was possible to determine differential dose and time responses, and the specificity for the detection of neutralizing antibodies was assessed. The evaluation of serotype-specific neutralizing antibodies can be of both clinical and epidemiologic importance as a means of selecting the appropriate serotype adenovector(s).
Human Gene Therapy 04/2004; 15(3):293-304. DOI:10.1089/104303404322886147 · 3.62 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The development of vaccines against human papillomaviruses (HPVs) has long been hampered by the inability to grow HPVs in tissue culture and the lack of an efficient neutralization assay. To date, less than 10% of more than 100 different HPV types can be grown in athymic and "SCID" mouse xenograft systems or raft culture systems. Recently, the in vitro generation of HPV pseudovirions and their use in neutralization assays were demonstrated. The major shortcomings of the current approaches to HPV neutralization are the lack of HPV virions for most types for the xenograft methods and the time-consuming and inefficient generation of infective pseudovirions for the latter methods, which precludes their use in large-scale HPV clinical trials or epidemiological studies. We describe here a novel and efficient approach to generating pseudovirions in which HPV virus-like particles (VLPs) are coupled to the beta-lactamase gene as a reporter. We show that it is not necessary to encapsidate the reporter gene constructs into the pseudovirions. Using sera from human volunteers immunized with HPV-11 VLPs expressed in yeast, we demonstrate that our novel neutralization assay compares favorably with the athymic mouse neutralization assay. Furthermore, our assay was used to define neutralizing monoclonal antibodies to HPV-6, which were previously unknown.