[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The voltage-gated potassium (Kv) 1.3 channel is widely regarded as a therapeutic target for immunomodulation in autoimmune diseases. ShK-186, a selective inhibitor of Kv1.3 channels, ameliorates autoimmune diseases in rodent models, and human phase 1 trials of this agent in healthy volunteers have been completed. In this study, we identified and characterized a large family of Stichodactyla helianthus toxin (ShK)–related peptides in parasitic worms. Based on phylogenetic analysis, 2 worm peptides were selected for study: AcK1, a 51-residue peptide expressed in the anterior secretory glands of the dog-infecting hookworm Ancylostoma caninum and the human-infecting hookworm Ancylostoma ceylanicum, and BmK1, the C-terminal domain of a metalloprotease from the filarial worm Brugia malayi. These peptides in solution adopt helical structures closely resembling that of ShK. At doses in the nanomolar–micromolar range, they block native Kv1.3 in human T cells and cloned Kv1.3 stably expressed in L929 mouse fibroblasts. They preferentially suppress the proliferation of rat CCR7− effector memory T cells without affecting naive and central memory subsets and inhibit the delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) response caused by skin-homing effector memory T cells in rats. Further, they suppress IFNγ production by human T lymphocytes. ShK-related peptides in parasitic worms may contribute to the potential beneficial effects of probiotic parasitic worm therapy in human autoimmune diseases.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Kv1.3 channel is a recognized target for pharmaceutical development to treat autoimmune diseases and organ rejection. ShK-186, a specific peptide inhibitor of Kv1.3, has shown promise in animal models of multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis. Here, we describe the pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic relationship for ShK-186 in rats and monkeys. The pharmacokinetic profile of ShK-186 was evaluated with a validated high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry method to measure the peptide's concentration in plasma. These results were compared with single-photon emission computed tomography/computed tomography data collected with an ¹¹¹In-1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-1,4,7,10-tetraacetic acid-conjugate of ShK-186 to assess whole-blood pharmacokinetic parameters as well as the peptide's absorption, distribution, and excretion. Analysis of these data support a model wherein ShK-186 is absorbed slowly from the injection site, resulting in blood concentrations above the Kv1.3 channel-blocking IC₅₀ value for up to 7 days in monkeys. Pharmacodynamic studies on human peripheral blood mononuclear cells showed that brief exposure to ShK-186 resulted in sustained suppression of cytokine responses and may contribute to prolonged drug effects. In delayed-type hypersensitivity, chronic relapsing-remitting experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis, and pristane-induced arthritis rat models, a single dose of ShK-186 every 2 to 5 days was as effective as daily administration. ShK-186's slow distribution from the injection site and its long residence time on the Kv1.3 channel contribute to the prolonged therapeutic effect of ShK-186 in animal models of autoimmune disease.
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 05/2012; 342(3):642-53. · 3.89 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Electrophysiological and pharmacological studies coupled with molecular identification have revealed a unique network of ion channels--Kv1.3, KCa3.1, CRAC (Orai1 + Stim1), TRPM7, Cl(swell)--in lymphocytes that initiates and maintains the calcium signaling cascade required for activation. The expression pattern of these channels changes during lymphocyte activation and differentiation, allowing the functional network to adapt during an immune response. The Kv1.3 channel is of interest because it plays a critical role in subsets of T and B lymphocytes implicated in autoimmune disorders. The ShK toxin from the sea anemone Stichodactyla helianthus is a potent blocker of Kv1.3. ShK-186, a synthetic analog of ShK, is being developed as a therapeutic for autoimmune diseases, and is scheduled to begin first-in-man phase-1 trials in 2011. This review describes the journey that has led to the development of ShK-186.