A novel approach to anticancer therapy: Molecular modules based on the barnase:barstar pair for targeted delivery of HSP70 to tumor cells

A. M. Sapozhnikov, A. V. Klinkova, O. A. Shustova, M. V. Grechikhina, M. S. Kilyachus, O. A. Stremovskiy, E. I. Kovalenko, S. M. Deyev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

One important distinction between many tumor cell types and normal cells consists in the translocation of a number of intracellular proteins, in particular the 70 kDa heat shock protein (HSP70), to the surface of the plasma membrane. It has been demonstrated that such surface localization of HSP70 on tumor cells is recognized by cytotoxic effectors of the immune system, which increases their cytolytic activity. The mechanisms behind this interaction are not fully clear; however, the phenomenon of surface localization of HSP70 on cancer cells can be used to develop new approaches to antitumor immunotherapy. At the same time, it is known that the presence of HSP70 on a cell's surface is not a universal feature of cancer cells. Many types of tumor tissues do not express membrane-associated HSP70, which limits the clinical potential of these approaches. In this context, targeted delivery of exogenous HSP70 to the surface of cancer cells with the aim of attracting and activating the cytotoxic effectors of the immune system can be considered a promising means of antitumor immunotherapy. Molecular constructs containing recombinant mini-antibodies specific to tumor-associated antigens (in particular, antibodies specific to HER2/neu-antigen and other markers highly expressed on the surface of a wide range of cancer cells) can be used to target the delivery of HSP70 to tumor tissues. In order to assess the feasibility and effectiveness of this approach, recombinant constructs containing a mini-antibody specific to the HER2/ neu-antigen in the first module and HSP70 molecule or a fragment of this protein in the second module were developed in this study. Strong selective interaction between the modules was ensured by a cohesive unit formed by the barnase:barstar pair, a heterodimer characterized by an unusually high constant of association. During testing of the developed constructs in in vitro models the constructs exhibited targeted binding to tumor cells expressing the HER2/neu antigen and the agents had a significant stimulating effect on the cytotoxic activity of NK cells against the respective cancer cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-91
Number of pages7
JournalActa Naturae
Volume10
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • 70 kDa heat shock protein
  • Barnase:barstar
  • Cancer immunotherapy
  • HER2/neu antigen
  • Mini-antibody
  • NK cells
  • Targeted delivery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology

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