[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Angiostatin and other plasminogen derivatives exhibit antitumor activities directly or indirectly and have demonstrated promising anticancer effects in preclinical studies but mostly failed in clinical trials partly due to their short serum half-lives. Our previous studies demonstrated that recombinant human plasminogen kringle 1-5 (K1-5) has a superior antitumor activity than angiostatin. In addition, optimization of recombinant K1-5 with 3 amino acid substitutions enhances its antitumor effect. The current study was thus undertaken to evaluate prolonged expression of optimized K1-5 as cancer gene therapy. The recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector was used to express a secreted form of the optimized K1-5 (AAV-sK15tm) to improve its pharmacokinetic profile, which was considered to be the hurdle of angiostatin treatment in cancer. We successfully generated high titer recombinant AAV vectors and observed sustained transgene expression for 567 days after a single injection of virus. The treated animals did not display any visible signs of abnormalities and showed normal serum biochemistry. The therapeutic potential of this treatment modality was demonstrated by both a strong inhibition of lung metastasis in the mouse B16F10 melanoma model and significant growth retardation of Lewis lung carcinoma xenografts in C57BL/6N mice as well as human A2058 melanoma xenografts in NOD/SCID mice. Taken together, our results suggested that AAV-sK15tm produced long term suppressive effects on cancer growth in vivo and should warrant serious consideration for clinical development.
Human gene therapy 05/2015; 26(9). DOI:10.1089/hum.2013.220 · 3.76 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chronic inflammatory processes have been increasingly shown to be involved in the pathogenesis of diabetes and diabetic nephropathy. Recently, we demonstrated that a lectin-like domain of thrombomodulin (THBD), which is known as THBD domain 1 (THBDD1) and which acts independently of protein C activation, neutralised an inflammatory response in a mouse model of sepsis. Here, therapeutic effects of gene therapy with adeno-associated virus (AAV)-carried THBDD1 (AAV-THBDD1) were tested in a mouse model of type 2 diabetic nephropathy.
To assess the therapeutic potential of THBDD1 and the mechanisms involved, we delivered AAV-THBDD1 (10(11) genome copies) into db/db mice and tested the effects of recombinant THBDD1 on conditionally immortalised podocytes.
A single dose of AAV-THBDD1 improved albuminuria, renal interstitial inflammation and glomerular sclerosis, as well as renal function in db/db mice. These effects were closely associated with: (1) inhibited activation of the nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) pathway and the NACHT, LRR and PYD domains-containing protein 3 (NLRP3) inflammasome; (2) promotion of nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (NRF2) nuclear translocation; and (3) suppression of mitochondria-derived apoptosis in the kidney of treated mice.
AAV-THBDD1 gene therapy resulted in improvements in a model of diabetic nephropathy by suppressing the NF-κB-NLRP3 inflammasome-mediated inflammatory process, enhancing the NRF2 antioxidant pathway and inhibiting apoptosis in the kidney.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background: Patients with advanced hematologic malignancies remain at risk for relapse following reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC) allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT). We conducted a prospective clinical trial to test whether vaccination with whole leukemia cells early after transplantation facilitates the expansion of leukemia-reactive T cells and thereby enhances antitumor immunity. Methods: We enrolled 22 patients with advanced chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), 18 of whom received up to 6 vaccines initiated between days 30 and 45 after transplantation. Each vaccine consisted of irradiated autologous tumor cells admixed with GM-CSF-secreting bystander cells. Serial patient PBMC samples following transplantation were collected, and the impact of vaccination on T cell activity was evaluated. Results: At a median follow-up of 2.9 (range, 1-4) years, the estimated 2-year progression-free and overall survival rates of vaccinated subjects were 82% (95% CI, 54%-94%) and 88% (95% CI, 59%-97%), respectively. Although vaccination only had a modest impact on recovering T cell numbers, CD8+ T cells from vaccinated patients consistently reacted against autologous tumor, but not alloantigen-bearing recipient cells with increased secretion of the effector cytokine IFN-γ, unlike T cells from nonvaccinated CLL patients undergoing allo-HSCT. Further analysis confirmed that 17% (range, 13%-33%) of CD8+ T cell clones isolated from 4 vaccinated patients by limiting dilution of bulk tumor-reactive T cells solely reacted against CLL-associated antigens. Conclusion: Our studies suggest that autologous tumor cell vaccination is an effective strategy to advance long-term leukemia control following allo-HSCT. Trial registration: Clinicaltrials.gov NCT00442130. Funding: NCI (5R21CA115043-2), NHLBI (5R01HL103532-03), and Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Translational Research Program.
The Journal of clinical investigation 08/2013; 123(9). DOI:10.1172/JCI69098 · 13.22 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BCR-ABL(+) K562 cells hold clinical promise as a component of cancer vaccines, either as bystander cells genetically modified to express immunostimulatory molecules, or as a source of leukemia antigens. To develop a method for detecting T-cell reactivity against K562 cell-derived antigens in patients, we exploited the dendritic cell (DC)-mediated cross-presentation of proteins generated from apoptotic cells. We used UVB irradiation to consistently induce apoptosis of K562 cells, which were then fed to autologous DCs. These DCs were used to both stimulate and detect antigen-specific CD8(+) T-cell reactivity. As proof-of-concept, we used cross-presented apoptotic influenza matrix protein-expressing K562 cells to elicit reactivity from matrix protein-reactive T cells. Likewise, we used this assay to detect increased anti-CML antigen T-cell reactivity in CML patients that attained long-lasting clinical remissions following immunotherapy (donor lymphocyte infusion), as well as in 2 of 3 CML patients vaccinated with lethally irradiated K562 cells that were modified to secrete high levels of granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF). This methodology can be readily adapted to examine the effects of other whole tumor cell-based vaccines, a scenario in which the precise tumor antigens that stimulate immune responses are unknown.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Lewis Y Ag (LeY) is a cell-surface tetrasaccharide that participates in angiogenesis. Recently, we demonstrated that LeY is a specific ligand of the recombinant lectin-like domain of thrombomodulin (TM). However, the biologic function of interaction between LeY and TM in endothelial cells has never been investigated. Therefore, the role of LeY in tube formation and the role of the recombinant lectin-like domain of TM-TM domain 1 (rTMD1)-in antiangiogenesis were investigated. The recombinant TM ectodomain exhibited lower angiogenic activity than did the recombinant TM domains 2 and 3. rTMD1 interacted with soluble LeY and membrane-bound LeY and inhibited soluble LeY-mediated chemotaxis of endothelial cells. LeY was highly expressed on membrane ruffles and protrusions during tube formation on Matrigel. Blockade of LeY with rTMD1 or Ab against LeY inhibited endothelial tube formation in vitro. Epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor in HUVECs was LeY modified. rTMD1 inhibited EGF receptor signaling, chemotaxis, and tube formation in vitro, and EGF-mediated angiogenesis and tumor angiogenesis in vivo. We concluded that LeY is involved in vascular endothelial tube formation and rTMD1 inhibits angiogenesis via interaction with LeY. Administration of rTMD1 or recombinant adeno-associated virus vector carrying TMD1 could be a promising antiangiogenesis strategy.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although several clinical trials utilizing the adeno-associated virus (AAV) type 2 serotype 2 (2/2) are now underway, it is unclear whether this particular serotype offers any advantage over others in terms of safety or efficiency when delivered directly to the CNS.
Recombinant AAV2-green fluorescent protein (GFP) serotypes 2/1, 2/2, 2/5, and 2/8 were generated following standard triple transfection protocols (final yield 5.4 × 10(12) particles/ml). A total of 180 μl of each solution was stereotactically infused, covering the entire rostrocaudal extent of the caudoputamen in 4 rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) (3.0 ± 0.5 kg). After 6 weeks' survival, the brain was formalin fixed, cut at 40 μm, and stained with standard immunohistochemistry for anti-GFP, anticaspase-2, and cell-specific markers (anti-microtubule-associated protein-2 for neurons and anti-glial fibrillary acidic protein for glia). Unbiased stereological counting methods were used to determine cell number and striatal volume.
The entire striatum of each animal contained GFP-positive cells with significant labeling extending beyond the borders of the basal ganglia. No ischemic/necrotic, hemorrhagic, or neoplastic change was observed in any brain. Total infusate volumes were similar across the 4 serotypes. However, GFP-labeled cell density was markedly different. Adeno-associated virus 2/1, 2/2, and 2/5 each labeled < 8000 cells/mm(3), whereas serotype 8 labeled > 21,000 cells, a 3- to 4-fold higher transduction efficiency. On the other hand, serotype 8 also labeled neurons and glia with equal affinity compared with neuronal specificities > 89% for the other serotypes. Moderate caspase-2 colabeling was noted in neurons immediately around the AAV2/1 injection tracts, but was not seen above the background anywhere in the brain following injections with serotypes 2, 5, or 8.
Intrastriatal delivery of AAV2 yields the highest cell transduction efficiencies but lowest neuronal specificity for serotype 8 when compared with serotypes 1, 2, and 5. Only AAV2/1 revealed significant caspase-2 activation. Careful consideration of serotype-specific differences in AAV2 neurotropism, transduction efficiency, and potential toxicity may affect future human trials.
Journal of Neurosurgery 10/2010; 114(3):672-80. DOI:10.3171/2010.8.JNS091583 · 3.74 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: J. Neurochem. (2009) 109, 838–845.
Enhanced delivery and expression of genes in specific neuronal systems is critical for the development of genetic models of neurodegenerative disease and potential gene therapy. Recent discovery of new recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) capsid serotypes has resulted in improved transduction efficiency, but expression levels, spread of transgene, and potential toxicity can differ depending on brain region and among species. We compared the transduction efficiency of titer-matched rAAV 2/1, 2/5, and 2/8 to the commonly used rAAV2/2 in the rat nigrostriatal system via expression of the reporter transgene, enhanced green fluorescent protein. Newer rAAV serotypes 2/1, 2/5, and 2/8 demonstrated marked increase in transduction and spread of enhanced green fluorescent protein expression in dopaminergic nigrostriatal neurons and projections to the striatum and globus pallidus compared to rAAV2/2 at 2 weeks post-injection. The number of nigral cells transduced was greatest for rAAV2/1, but for serotypes 2/5 and 2/8 was still two- to threefold higher than that for 2/2. Enhanced transduction did not cause an increase in glial cell response or toxicity. New rAAV serotypes thus promise improved gene delivery to nigrostriatal system with the potential for better models and therapeutics for Parkinson disease and other neurodegenerative disorders.
Journal of Neurochemistry 03/2009; 109(3):838-45. DOI:10.1111/j.1471-4159.2009.06010.x · 4.28 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Antitumor lymphocytes can be generated ex vivo unencumbered by immunoregulation found in vivo. Adoptive transfer of these cells is a promising therapeutic modality that could establish long-term antitumor immunity. However, the widespread use of adoptive therapy has been hampered by the difficulty of consistently generating potent antitumor lymphocytes in a timely manner for every patient. To overcome this, we sought to establish a clinical grade culture system that can reproducibly generate antigen-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL).
We created an off-the-shelf, standardized, and renewable artificial antigen-presenting cell (aAPC) line that coexpresses HLA class I, CD54, CD58, CD80, and the dendritic cell maturation marker CD83. We tested the ability of aAPC to generate tumor antigen-specific CTL under optimal culture conditions. The number, phenotype, effector function, and in vitro longevity of generated CTL were determined.
Stimulation of CD8(+) T cells with peptide-pulsed aAPC generated large numbers of functional CTL that recognized a variety of tumor antigens. These CTLs, which possess a phenotype consistent with in vivo persistence, survived ex vivo for prolonged periods of time. Clinical grade aAPC(33), produced under current Good Manufacturing Practices guidelines, generated sufficient numbers of CTL within a short period of time. These CTL specifically lysed a variety of melanoma tumor lines naturally expressing a target melanoma antigen. Furthermore, antitumor CTL were easily generated in all melanoma patients examined.
With clinical grade aAPC(33) in hand, we are now poised for clinical translation of ex vivo generated antitumor CTL for adoptive cell transfer.
Clinical Cancer Research 04/2007; 13(6):1857-67. DOI:10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-06-1905 · 8.72 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) exerts crucial functions during pathological angiogenesis and normal physiology. We observed increased hematocrit (60-75%) after high-grade inhibition of VEGF by diverse methods, including adenoviral expression of soluble VEGF receptor (VEGFR) ectodomains, recombinant VEGF Trap protein and the VEGFR2-selective antibody DC101. Increased production of red blood cells (erythrocytosis) occurred in both mouse and primate models, and was associated with near-complete neutralization of VEGF corneal micropocket angiogenesis. High-grade inhibition of VEGF induced hepatic synthesis of erythropoietin (Epo, encoded by Epo) >40-fold through a HIF-1alpha-independent mechanism, in parallel with suppression of renal Epo mRNA. Studies using hepatocyte-specific deletion of the Vegfa gene and hepatocyte-endothelial cell cocultures indicated that blockade of VEGF induced hepatic Epo by interfering with homeostatic VEGFR2-dependent paracrine signaling involving interactions between hepatocytes and endothelial cells. These data indicate that VEGF is a previously unsuspected negative regulator of hepatic Epo synthesis and erythropoiesis and suggest that levels of Epo and erythrocytosis could represent noninvasive surrogate markers for stringent blockade of VEGF in vivo.
Nature Medicine 08/2006; 12(7):793-800. DOI:10.1038/nm1428 · 27.36 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The development of leukemias in several children with severe combined immunodeficiency disease who were transplanted with retroviral vector-transduced bone marrow cells has renewed concerns about the risks associated with the random integration of proviral sequences into chromosomal DNA. One theoretical way to reduce the risks of insertional mutagenesis would be to employ transduction/transplantation protocols that minimize the total number of genetically modified cells and associated proviral integration "events" introduced into recipients. Toward this end, we have developed a transduction protocol that involves the short-term incubation of highly purified murine stem cells with high-titer recombinant lentivirus vectors in the presence of serum-free medium and the cytokines SCF and TPO. Competitive repopulation studies showed that stem cells transduced in this way possessed the same reconstitutive ability as fresh, unmanipulated cells. Animals transplanted with only 200-2000 transduced cells were efficiently reconstituted with the genetically modified cells, and most hematopoietic cells in the recipients expressed the transgene. In contrast, the use of high-titer oncoretroviral vectors in conjunction with the same transduction/transplantation protocol resulted in only low levels of gene marking in vivo. The use of a similar transduction/transplantation strategy in future clinical studies may offer distinct advantages over current protocols.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A major problem facing islet transplantation is immune destruction of grafts by transplant rejection and autoimmunity. Some success in prolonging graft rejection has been obtained by transducing islets prior to transplantation with adenoviral (Ad) vectors containing CTLA4-Ig and TGFbeta. The purpose of this study was to see if lentiviral (LV) vectors would provide superior results compared with adenoviral vectors.
Islets were isolated from Sprague-Dawley rats and transduced with Ad or LV vectors containing LacZ, CTLA4-Ig, CTLA4, and TGFbeta1 using various MOIs. Islets transduced with LV were healthy as judged by DNA and insulin content, and insulin secretion. Using the kidney capsule transplant site, 500 transduced rat islets were transplanted into streptozotocin diabetic B6AF1 mice.
Maintenance of normoglycemia was prolonged in recipient mice carrying islets transduced with Ad vectors containing CTLA4-Ig, CTLA4, and TGFbeta1. Return of hyperglycemia in controls was 17-18 days while loss of function for the experimental groups occurred at 20-27 days. For the lentivirus transduced islets, rejection of controls was 20+/-1.6 days, for CTLA4-Ig was 42+/-21 days and for TGFbeta was 28+/-3.2 days.
Although islets transduced with either adenovirus or lentivirus containing CTLA4-Ig, CTLA4, and TGFbeta1 could prolong graft survival in a rat to mouse transplantation model, with the conditions of this study lentivirus provided no advantage over adenovirus vectors.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent studies on the control of specific metabolic pathways in bacteria have documented the existence of entirely RNA-based mechanisms for controlling gene expression. These mechanisms involve the modulation of translation, transcription termination or RNA self-cleavage through the direct interaction of specific intracellular metabolites and RNA sequences. Here we show that an analogous RNA-based gene regulation system can effectively be designed for mammalian cells via the incorporation of sequences encoding self-cleaving RNA motifs into the transcriptional unit of a gene or vector. When correctly positioned, the sequences lead to potent inhibition of gene or vector expression, owing to the spontaneous cleavage of the RNA transcript. Administration of either oligonucleotides complementary to regions of the self-cleaving motif or a specific small molecule results in the efficient induction of gene expression, owing to inhibition of self-cleavage of the messenger RNA. Efficient regulation of transgene expression is shown in a variety of mammalian cell lines and live animals. In conjunction with other emerging technologies, this methodology may be particularly applicable to the development of gene regulation systems tailored to any small inducer molecule, and provide a novel means of biological sensing in vivo that may have an important application in the regulated delivery of protein therapeutics.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The adapter SLP-76 plays an essential role in Fc epsilon RI signaling, since SLP-76(-/-) bone marrow-derived mast cells (BMMC) fail to degranulate and release interleukin-6 (IL-6) following Fc epsilon RI ligation. To define the role of SLP-76 domains and motifs in Fc epsilon RI signaling, SLP-76(-/-) BMMC were retrovirally transduced with SLP-76 and SLP-76 mutants. The SLP-76 N-terminal and Gads binding domains, but not the SH2 domain, were critical for Fc epsilon RI-mediated degranulation and IL-6 secretion, whereas all three domains are essential for T-cell proliferation following T-cell receptor (TCR) ligation. Unexpectedly, the three tyrosine residues in SLP-76 critical for TCR signaling, Y112, Y128, and Y145, were not essential for IL-6 secretion, but were required for degranulation and mitogen-activated protein kinase activation. Furthermore, a Y112/128F SLP-76 mutant, but not a Y145F mutant, strongly reconstituted mast cell degranulation, suggesting a critical role for Y145 in Fc epsilon RI-mediated exocytosis. These results point to important differences in the function of SLP-76 between T cells and mast cells.