Epidermal growth factor (EGF)-related proteins such as transforming growth factor α (TGF-α) control cancer cell growth through autocrine and paracrine pathways. Overexpression of TGF-α and/or its receptor (EGFR) has been associated with a more aggressive disease and a poor prognosis. The blockade of EGFR activation has been proposed as a target for anticancer therapy. Monoclonal antibody (MAb) C225 is an anti-EGFR humanized chimeric mouse MAb that is presently in Phase II clinical trials in cancer patients. Previous studies have suggested the potentiation of the antitumor activity of certain cytotoxic drugs, such as cisplatin and doxorubicin, in human cancer cell lines by treatment with anti-EGFR antibodies. We have evaluated in human ovarian, breast, and colon cancer cell lines, which express functional EGFR, the antiproliferative activity of MAb C225 in combination with topotecan, a cytotoxic drug that specifically inhibits topoisomerase I and that has shown antitumor activity in these malignancies. A dose-dependent supraadditive increase of growth inhibition in vitro was observed when cancer cells were treated with topotecan and MAb C225 in a sequential schedule. In this respect, the cooperativity quotient, defined as the ratio between the actual growth inhibition obtained by treatment with topotecan followed by MAb C225 and the sum of the growth inhibition achieved by each agent, ranged from 1.2 to 3, depending on drug concentration and cancer cell line. Treatment with MAb C225 also markedly enhanced apoptotic cell death induced by topotecan. For example, in GEO colon cancer cells, 5 nm topotecan, followed by 0.5 μg/ml MAb C225, induced apoptosis in 45% cells as compared with untreated cells (6%) or to 5 nm topotecan-treated cells (22%). Treatment of mice bearing established human GEO colon cancer xenografts with topotecan or with MAb C225 determined a transient inhibition of tumor growth because GEO tumors resumed the growth rate of untreated tumors at the end of the treatment period. In contrast, an almost complete tumor regression was observed in all mice treated with the two agents in combination. This determined a prolonged life span of the mice that was significantly different as compared with controls (P < 0.001), to MAb C225-treated group (P < 0.001), or to the topotecan-treated group (P < 0.001). All mice of the topotecan plus MAb C225 group were the only animals alive 14 weeks after tumor cell injection. Furthermore, 20% of mice in this group were still alive after 19 weeks. The combined treatment with MAb C225 and topotecan was well tolerated by mice with no signs of acute or delayed toxicity. These results provide a rationale for the evaluation of the anticancer activity of the combination of topoisomerase I inhibitors and anti-EGFR blocking MAbs in clinical trials.

Antitumor activity of sequential treatment with topotecan and anti-epidermal growth factor receptor monoclonal antibody C225.

PEPE, Stefano;
1999

Abstract

Epidermal growth factor (EGF)-related proteins such as transforming growth factor α (TGF-α) control cancer cell growth through autocrine and paracrine pathways. Overexpression of TGF-α and/or its receptor (EGFR) has been associated with a more aggressive disease and a poor prognosis. The blockade of EGFR activation has been proposed as a target for anticancer therapy. Monoclonal antibody (MAb) C225 is an anti-EGFR humanized chimeric mouse MAb that is presently in Phase II clinical trials in cancer patients. Previous studies have suggested the potentiation of the antitumor activity of certain cytotoxic drugs, such as cisplatin and doxorubicin, in human cancer cell lines by treatment with anti-EGFR antibodies. We have evaluated in human ovarian, breast, and colon cancer cell lines, which express functional EGFR, the antiproliferative activity of MAb C225 in combination with topotecan, a cytotoxic drug that specifically inhibits topoisomerase I and that has shown antitumor activity in these malignancies. A dose-dependent supraadditive increase of growth inhibition in vitro was observed when cancer cells were treated with topotecan and MAb C225 in a sequential schedule. In this respect, the cooperativity quotient, defined as the ratio between the actual growth inhibition obtained by treatment with topotecan followed by MAb C225 and the sum of the growth inhibition achieved by each agent, ranged from 1.2 to 3, depending on drug concentration and cancer cell line. Treatment with MAb C225 also markedly enhanced apoptotic cell death induced by topotecan. For example, in GEO colon cancer cells, 5 nm topotecan, followed by 0.5 μg/ml MAb C225, induced apoptosis in 45% cells as compared with untreated cells (6%) or to 5 nm topotecan-treated cells (22%). Treatment of mice bearing established human GEO colon cancer xenografts with topotecan or with MAb C225 determined a transient inhibition of tumor growth because GEO tumors resumed the growth rate of untreated tumors at the end of the treatment period. In contrast, an almost complete tumor regression was observed in all mice treated with the two agents in combination. This determined a prolonged life span of the mice that was significantly different as compared with controls (P < 0.001), to MAb C225-treated group (P < 0.001), or to the topotecan-treated group (P < 0.001). All mice of the topotecan plus MAb C225 group were the only animals alive 14 weeks after tumor cell injection. Furthermore, 20% of mice in this group were still alive after 19 weeks. The combined treatment with MAb C225 and topotecan was well tolerated by mice with no signs of acute or delayed toxicity. These results provide a rationale for the evaluation of the anticancer activity of the combination of topoisomerase I inhibitors and anti-EGFR blocking MAbs in clinical trials.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11386/3104509
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