Author(s): Guillen KP, Kurkjian C, Harrison RG
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Enzyme prodrug therapy shows promise for the treatment of solid tumors, but current approaches lack effective/safe delivery strategies. To address this, we previously developed three enzyme-containing fusion proteins targeted via annexin V to phosphatidylserine exposed on the tumor vasculature and tumor cells, using the enzymes L-methioninase, purine nucleoside phosphorylase, or cytosine deaminase. In enzyme prodrug therapy, the fusion protein is allowed to bind to the tumor before a nontoxic drug precursor, a prodrug, is introduced. Upon interaction of the prodrug with the bound enzyme, an anticancer compound is formed, but only in the direct vicinity of the tumor, thereby mitigating the risk of side effects while creating high intratumoral drug concentrations. The applicability of these enzyme prodrug systems to treating prostate cancer has remained unexplored. Additionally, target availability may increase with the addition of low dose docetaxel treatment to the enzyme prodrug treatment, but this effect has not been previously investigated. To this end, we examined the binding strength and the cytotoxic efficacy (with and without docetaxel treatment) of these enzyme prodrug systems on the human prostate cancer cell line PC-3. RESULTS: All three fusion proteins exhibited strong binding; dissociation constants were 0.572 nM for L-methioninase-annexin V (MT-AV), 0.406 nM for purine nucleoside phosphorylase-annexin V (PNP-AV), and 0.061 nM for cytosine deaminase-annexin V (CD-AV). MT-AV produced up to 99\% cell death (p < 0.001) with limited cytotoxicity of the prodrug alone. PNP-AV with docetaxel created up to 78\% cell death (p < 0.001) with no cytotoxicity of the prodrug alone. CD-AV with docetaxel displayed up to 60\% cell death (p < 0.001) with no cytotoxicity of the prodrug alone. Docetaxel treatment created significant increases in cytotoxicity for PNP-AV and CD-AV. CONCLUSIONS: Strong binding of fusion proteins to the prostate cancer cells and effective cell killing suggest that the enzyme prodrug systems with MT-AV and PNP-AV may be effective treatment options. Additionally, low-dose docetaxel treatment was found to increase the cytotoxic effect of the annexin V-targeted therapeutics for the PNP-AV and CD-AV systems.
This article was published in J Biomed Sci
and referenced in Cloning & Transgenesis