Publications by authors named "Tetsuji Naka"

151 Publications

Leucine-Rich Alpha-2 Glycoprotein May Be Predictive of the Adalimumab Trough Level and Antidrug Antibody Development for Patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease: A Sub-Analysis of the PLANET Study.

Digestion 2021 Jul 16:1-9. Epub 2021 Jul 16.

Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Internal Medicine, Iwate Medical University, Iwate, Japan.

Introduction: The aim of this study was to examine whether biomarkers are predictive of the adalimumab (ADA) trough level and antidrug antibody development in patients with Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC).

Methods: Using data obtained in a prospective, multicenter, observational study (PLANET), we assessed serial changes in a novel biomarker - leucine-rich alpha-2 glycoprotein (LRG) - during ADA treatment for patients with active CD and UC. We measured serum LRG, C-reactive protein (CRP), and fecal calprotectin (fCAL) at weeks 0, 12, 24, and 52. The ADA trough level and anti-ADA antibody (AAA) were also measured at weeks 12 and 52. Correlations between the ADA trough level, AAA, and biomarkers were examined.

Results: In all, 34 patients with CD and 47 patients with UC were enrolled. The ADA trough level at week 12 or at the time of ADA withdrawal was 8.5 ± 3.9 in the AAA-negative group (n = 70) and 2.9 ± 2.7 μg/mL in the AAA-positive group (n = 8) (p < 0.0001). The ADA trough level at week 12 or at the time of ADA withdrawal was associated with pretreatment LRG (p = 0.0437 and r = -0.23).

Conclusion: LRG, rather than CRP or fCAL, may be a marker for predicting the trough level of ADA for patients with CD and UC treated with ADA.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000517339DOI Listing
July 2021

A glypican-1-targeted antibody-drug conjugate exhibits potent tumor growth inhibition in glypican-1-positive pancreatic cancer and esophageal squamous cell carcinoma.

Neoplasia 2021 Sep 28;23(9):939-950. Epub 2021 Jul 28.

Department of Clinical Immunology, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Nankoku, Kochi, Japan; Institute for Biomedical Sciences Molecular Pathophysiology, Iwate Medical University, Yahaba, Iwate, Japan; Division of Allergy and Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine, Iwate Medical University School of Medicine, Yahaba, Iwate, Japan. Electronic address:

An antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) is a promising therapeutic modality because selective and effective delivery of an anti-cancer drug is achieved by drug-conjugated antibody-targeting cancer antigen. Glypican 1 (GPC1) is highly expressed in malignant tumors, including pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) and esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). Herein, we describe the usefulness of GPC1-targeting ADC. Humanized anti-GPC1 antibody (clone T2) was developed and conjugated with monomethyl auristatin E (MMAE) via maleimidocaproyl-valine-citrulline-p-aminobenzyloxycarbonyl (mc-vc-PABC) linkers (humanized GPC1-ADC[MMAE]). Humanized GPC1-ADC(MMAE) inhibited the growth of GPC1-positive PDAC and ESCC cell lines via inducing cycle arrest in the G2/M phase and apoptosis in vitro. The binding activity of humanized GPC1-ADC(MMAE) with GPC1 was comparable with that of the unconjugated anti-GPC1 antibody. The humanized GPC1-ADC(MMAE) was effective in GPC1-positive BxPC-3 subcutaneously xenografted mice but not in GPC1-negative BxPC-3-GPC1-KO xenografted mice. To assess the bystander killing activity of the humanized GPC1-ADC(MMAE), a mixture of GPC1-positive BxPC-3 and GPC1-negative BxPC-3-GPC1-KO-Luc cells were subcutaneously inoculated, and a heterogenous GPC1-expressing tumor model was developed. The humanized GPC1-ADC(MMAE) inhibited the tumor growth and decreased the luciferase signal, measured with an in vivo imaging system (IVIS), which suggests that the suppression of the BxPC-3-GPC1-KO-Luc population. The humanized GPC1-ADC(MMAE) also inhibited the established liver metastases of BxPC-3 cells and significantly improved the overall survival of the mice. It exhibited a potent antitumor effect on the GPC1-positive PDAC and ESCC patient-derived xenograft (PDX) models. Our preclinical data demonstrate that GPC1 is a promising therapeutic target for ADC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neo.2021.07.006DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8340053PMC
September 2021

Anti-Glypican-1 Antibody-drug Conjugate as Potential Therapy Against Tumor Cells and Tumor Vasculature for Glypican-1-Positive Cholangiocarcinoma.

Mol Cancer Ther 2021 Sep 17;20(9):1713-1722. Epub 2021 Jun 17.

Department of Clinical Immunology, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Nankoku, Japan.

Cholangiocarcinoma is a highly malignant cancer. Many patients need systemic chemotherapy to prevent tumor development and recurrence; however, their prognosis is poor due to the lack of effective therapy. Therefore, a new treatment option is urgently required. We recently identified glypican-1 (GPC1) as a novel cancer antigen of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma. We also demonstrated the efficacy and safety of GPC1-targeted ADC (GPC1-ADC) conjugating anti-GPC1 mAb possessing high internalization activity with monomethyl auristatin F (MMAF), which is a potent tubulin polymerizing inhibitor. In this study, we confirmed that GPC1 was highly expressed in cholangiocarcinoma cells and tissues. IHC analysis of 49 extrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma patient tumor specimens revealed high expression of GPC1 in 47% of patients. These patients demonstrated significantly poorer prognosis compared with the low-expression group in terms of disease-free survival and overall survival ( < 0.05). GPC1 was also expressed in tumor vessels of cholangiocarcinoma, but not on the vessels of nontumor tissues. MMAF-conjugated GPC1-ADC showed potent tumor growth inhibition against GPC1-positive cholangiocarcinoma cells and In a GPC1 knockout xenograft model, GPC1-ADC partially inhibited tumor growth. Vascular endothelial cells in tumor tissues of GPC1-negative xenograft mice expressed GPC1 and were arrested in the G-M phase of cell cycle by GPC1-ADC. GPC1-ADC exhibits direct as well as indirect antitumor effects via inhibition of tumor angiogenesis. Our preclinical data highlight GPC1-ADC as a promising therapy for GPC1-positive cholangiocarcinoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-21-0015DOI Listing
September 2021

CD70 antibody-drug conjugate: A potential novel therapeutic agent for ovarian cancer.

Cancer Sci 2021 Sep 8;112(9):3655-3668. Epub 2021 Jul 8.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Osaka University, Osaka, Japan.

This study aimed to investigate the cytotoxicity of a cluster of differentiation 70 antibody-drug conjugate (CD70-ADC) against ovarian cancer in in vitro and in vivo xenograft models. CD70 expression was assessed in clinical samples by immunohistochemical analysis. Western blotting and fluorescence-activated cell sorting analyses were used to determine CD70 expression in the ovarian cancer cell lines A2780 and SKOV3, and in the cisplatin-resistant ovarian cancer cell lines A2780cisR and SKOV3cisR. CD70 expression after cisplatin exposure was determined in A2780 cells transfected with mock- or nuclear factor (NF)-κB-p65-small interfering RNA. We developed an ADC with an anti-CD70 monoclonal antibody linked to monomethyl auristatin F and investigated its cytotoxic effect. We examined 63 ovarian cancer clinical samples; 43 (68.3%) of them expressed CD70. Among patients with advanced stage disease (n = 50), those who received neoadjuvant chemotherapy were more likely to exhibit high CD70 expression compared to those who did not (55.6% [15/27] vs 17.4% [4/23], P < .01). CD70 expression was confirmed in A2780cisR, SKOV3, and SKOV3cisR cells. Notably, CD70 expression was induced after cisplatin treatment in A2780 mock cells but not in A2780-NF-κB-p65-silenced cells. CD70-ADC was cytotoxic to A2780cisR, SKOV3, and SKOV3cisR cells, with IC values ranging from 0.104 to 0.341 nmol/L. In A2780cisR and SKOV3cisR xenograft models, tumor growth in CD70-ADC treated mice was significantly inhibited compared to that in the control-ADC treated mice (A2780cisR: 32.0 vs 1639.0 mm , P < .01; SKOV3cisR: 232.2 vs 584.9 mm , P < .01). Platinum treatment induced CD70 expression in ovarian cancer cells. CD70-ADC may have potential therapeutic implications in the treatment of CD70 expressing ovarian cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cas.15027DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8409415PMC
September 2021

Leucine-rich alpha-2 glycoprotein is a potential biomarker to monitor disease activity in inflammatory bowel disease receiving adalimumab: PLANET study.

J Gastroenterol 2021 Jun 3;56(6):560-569. Epub 2021 May 3.

Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, Iwate Medical University, Iwate, Japan.

Background: This multicenter prospective study (UMIN000019958) aimed to evaluate the usefulness of serum leucin-rich alpha-2 glycoprotein (LRG) levels in monitoring disease activity in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Methods: Patients with moderate-to-severe IBD initiated on adalimumab therapy were enrolled herein. Serum LRG, C-reactive protein (CRP), and fecal calprotectin (fCal) levels were measured at week 0, 12, 24, and 52. Colonoscopy was performed at week 0, 12, and 52 for ulcerative colitis (UC), and at week 0, 24, and 52 for Crohn's disease (CD). Endoscopic activity was assessed using the Simple Endoscopic Score for Crohn's Disease (SES-CD) for CD and the Mayo endoscopic subscore (MES) for UC.

Results: A total of 81 patients was enrolled. Serum LRG levels decreased along with improvements in clinical and endoscopic outcomes upon adalimumab treatment (27.4 ± 12.6 μg/ml at week 0, 15.5 ± 7.7 μg/ml at week 12, 15.7 ± 9.6 μg/ml at week 24, and 14.5 ± 6.8 μg/ml at week 52), being correlated with endoscopic activity at each time point (SES-CD: r = 0.391 at week 0, r = 0.563 at week 24, r = 0.697 at week 52; MES: r = 0.534 at week 0, r = 0.429 at week 12, r = 0.335 at week 52). Endoscopic activity better correlated with LRG compared to CRP and fCal on pooled analysis at all time points (SES-CD: LRG: r = 0.636, CRP: r = 0.402, fCal: r = 0.435; MES: LRG: r = 0.568, CRP: 0.389, fCal: r = 0.426).

Conclusions: Serum LRG is a useful biomarker of endoscopic activity both in CD and UC during the adalimumab treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00535-021-01793-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8137624PMC
June 2021

Propranolol suppresses gastric cancer cell growth by regulating proliferation and apoptosis.

Gastric Cancer 2021 Sep 29;24(5):1037-1049. Epub 2021 Mar 29.

Department of Gastroenterological Surgery, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine, 2-2 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka, 565-0871, Japan.

Background: Despite improvements in gastric cancer treatment, the mortality associated with advanced gastric cancer is still high. The activation of β-adrenergic receptors by stress has been shown to accelerate the progression of several cancers. Accordingly, increasing evidence suggests that the blockade of β-adrenergic signaling can inhibit tumor growth. However, the effect of β-blockers, which target several signaling pathways, on gastric cancer remains to be elucidated. This study aimed to investigate the anti-tumor effects of propranolol, a non-selective β-blocker, on gastric cancer.

Methods: We explored the effect of propranolol on the MKN45 and NUGC3 gastric cancer cell lines. Its efficacy and the mechanism by which it exerts anti-tumor effects were examined using several assays (e.g., cell proliferation, cell cycle, apoptosis, and wound healing) and a xenograft mouse model.

Results: We found that propranolol inhibited tumor growth and induced G1-phase cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in both cell lines. Propranolol also decreased the expression of phosphorylated CREB-ATF and MEK-ERK pathways; suppressed the expression of matrix metalloproteinase-2, 9 and vascular endothelial growth factor; and inhibited gastric cancer cell migration. In the xenograft mouse model, propranolol treatment significantly inhibited tumor growth, and immunohistochemistry revealed that propranolol led to the suppression of proliferation and induction of apoptosis.

Conclusions: Propranolol inhibits the proliferation of gastric cancer cells by inducing G1-phase cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. These findings indicate that propranolol might have an opportunity as a new drug for gastric cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10120-021-01184-7DOI Listing
September 2021

The Skin-Liver Axis Modulates the Psoriasiform Phenotype and Involves Leucine-Rich α-2 Glycoprotein.

J Immunol 2021 04 1;206(7):1469-1477. Epub 2021 Mar 1.

Department of Dermatology, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Nankoku 783-8505, Japan; and

Leucine-rich α-2 glycoprotein (LRG), one of the acute phase proteins mainly produced by the liver, similar to C-reactive protein, has been recognized as an inflammatory biomarker for rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel diseases. We recently demonstrated that LRG was also increased in the sera of psoriasis patients and correlated well with disease activity with a sensitivity and specificity much higher than C-reactive protein; however, whether LRG mechanistically contributed to the pathogenesis of psoriasis remained unclear. In this study, we explored the role of LRG in psoriasiform inflammation using LRG-knockout (KO) mice in an imiquimod (IMQ)-mediated model. Following topical treatment with IMQ, serum levels of LRG and its expression in the liver were abruptly elevated. Similarly, an acute surge of proinflammatory cytokines was observed in the liver, including IL-1β, TNF-α, and IL-6, although LRG-KO mice showed delayed responses. LRG-KO mice showed less skin inflammation in the IMQ model than wild-type mice. K5.Stat3C mice developed psoriasis-like lesions following tape stripping, which also abruptly induced LRG expression in the liver. A deficiency of mitigated tape stripping-induced lesions, similar to the IMQ model. These results indicate that LRG modulates both feed-forward and feedback loops of cytokines in the skin-liver axis involved with psoriasiform inflammation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4049/jimmunol.2000502DOI Listing
April 2021

The involvement of leucine-rich α-2 glycoprotein in the progression of skin and lung fibrosis in bleomycin-induced systemic sclerosis model.

Mod Rheumatol 2021 Feb 17:1-10. Epub 2021 Feb 17.

Department of Dermatology, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Nankoku, Japan.

Objective: Systemc sclerosis (SSc) is an autoimmune disorder characterized by fibrosis of the skin and internal organs. Recently, it has been shown that leucine-rich α-2 glycoprotein (LRG) functions as a modulator of transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) signaling in fibrosis. We aimed to characterize the effect of LRG in SSc model and SSc patients.

Methods: Histological analysis was performed on LRG knockout (KO) and wild type (WT) mouse in the skin and the lung after bleomycin administration. Serum LRG levels were measured during the injection period. Gene expression analysis of the skin and lung tissue from LRG KO and WT mice was performed. In addition, serum LRG levels were determined in SSc patients and healthy controls.

Results: LRG KO mice display an inhibition of fibrosis in the skin in association with a decrease of dermal thickness, collagen deposition, and phospho-Smad3 expression after bleomycin. Serum LRG concentration significantly increased in WT mice after bleomycin. There was also a suppression of inflammation and fibrosis in the LRG KO mouse lung indicated by a reduction of lung weight, collagen content, and phospho-Smad3 expression after bleomycin. Gene expressions of TGF-β and Smad2/3 were significantly reduced in LRG KO mice. Serum LRG levels in SSc patients were significantly higher than those in controls.

Conclusion: LRG promotes fibrotic processes in SSc model through TGF-β-Smad3 signaling, and LRG can be a biomarker for SSc in humans and also a potential therapeutic target for SSc.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14397595.2021.1883841DOI Listing
February 2021

LSR promotes epithelial ovarian cancer cell survival under energy stress through the LKB1-AMPK pathway.

Biochem Biophys Res Commun 2021 01 31;537:93-99. Epub 2020 Dec 31.

Center for Intractable Immune Disease, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Kochi, Japan.

Lipolysis-stimulated lipoprotein receptor (LSR), also known as a component of tricellular tight junctions, is highly expressing in epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC). However, the biological role of LSR in EOC cells remains unclear. In this study, we evaluated liver kinase B1 (LKB1) mediated AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) activity and investigated the effect of LSR on EOC cell survival under energy stress. LSR increased the levels of phospho-AMPKα at Thr172 and phospho-acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC) at Ser79 via LKB1-AMPK pathway in glucose deprivation in vitro. The increase of P-AMPKα (Thr172) and P-ACC (Ser79) was also detected in tumor microenvironment in vivo. Meanwhile, LSR promoted LKB1 localization at the cell membrane of EOC cells. By cell survival analysis, LSR attenuated glucose deprivation-induced cell death in EOC cells in vitro. Our results suggest that LSR promotes EOC cell survival and tumor growth through the LKB1-AMPK pathway.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbrc.2020.12.079DOI Listing
January 2021

Evaluation of leucine-rich alpha-2 glycoprotein as a biomarker of fetal infection.

PLoS One 2020 19;15(11):e0242076. Epub 2020 Nov 19.

Center for Intractable Immune Disease, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Kochi, Japan.

This study aimed to determine the association between umbilical cord leucine-rich alpha-2 glycoprotein (LRG) and fetal infection and investigate the underlying mechanism of LRG elevation in fetuses. We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of patients who delivered at Osaka University Hospital between 2012 and 2017 and selected those with histologically confirmed chorioamnionitis (CAM), which is a common pregnancy complication that may cause neonatal infection. The participants were divided into two groups: CAM with fetal infection (CAM-f[+] group, n = 14) and CAM without fetal infection (CAM-f[-] group, n = 31). Fetal infection was defined by the histological evidence of funisitis. We also selected 50 cases without clinical signs of CAM to serve as the control. LRG concentrations in sera obtained from the umbilical cord were unaffected by gestational age at delivery, neonatal birth weight, nor the presence of noninfectious obstetric complications (all, p > 0.05). Meanwhile, the LRG levels (median, Interquartile range [IQR]) were significantly higher in the CAM-f(+) group (10.37 [5.21-13.7] μg/ml) than in the CAM-f(-) (3.61 [2.71-4.65] μg/ml) or control group (3.39 [2.81-3.93] μg/ml; p < 0.01). The area under the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve of LRG for recognizing fetal infection was 0.92 (optimal cutoff, 5.08 μg/ml; sensitivity, 86%; specificity, 88%). In a mouse CAM model established by lipopolysaccharide administration, the fetal LRG protein in sera and LRG mRNA in the liver were significantly higher than those in phosphate-buffered saline (PBS)-administered control mice (p < 0.01). In vitro experiments using a fetal liver-derived cell line (WRL68) showed that the expression of LRG mRNA was significantly increased after interleukin (IL)-6, IL-1β, and tumor necrosis factor- alpha (TNF-α) stimulation (p < 0.01); the induction was considerably stronger following IL-6 and TNF-α stimulation (p < 0.01). In conclusion, LRG is an effective biomarker of fetal infection, and fetal hepatocytes stimulated with inflammatory cytokines may be the primary source of LRG production in utero.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0242076PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7676652PMC
January 2021

CD70 antibody-drug conjugate as a potential therapeutic agent for uterine leiomyosarcoma.

Am J Obstet Gynecol 2021 02 19;224(2):197.e1-197.e23. Epub 2020 Aug 19.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Osaka University, Osaka, Japan.

Background: Uterine leiomyosarcoma is a rare and aggressive gynecologic malignancy originating in the myometrium of the uterine corpus that tends to recur even after complete surgical excision. Current therapeutic agents have only modest effects on uterine leiomyosarcoma. Although antibodies and antibody-drug conjugates have been recognized as useful targeted therapies for other cancers, no study has yet evaluated the effects of this approach on uterine leiomyosarcoma.

Objective: This study aimed to examine the activity of tumoral CD70 in uterine leiomyosarcoma and assess the antitumor activity of CD70-antibody-drug conjugate treatment in uterine leiomyosarcoma.

Study Design: Target membrane proteins were screened by profiling and comparing membrane protein expression in 3 uterine leiomyosarcoma cell lines (SK-UT-1, SK-LMS-1, and SKN) and normal uterine myometrium cells using the isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation labeling method. Western blotting, fluorescence-activated cell sorting analyses, and immunohistochemistry were used to examine CD70 expression in the membrane proteins in uterine leiomyosarcoma cell lines and clinical samples. We developed an antibody-drug conjugate with a monoclonal antibody of the target membrane protein linked to monomethyl auristatin F and investigated its antitumor effects against uterine leiomyosarcoma (in vitro, in vivo, and in patient-derived xenograft models).

Results: CD70 was identified as a specific antigen highly expressed in uterine leiomyosarcoma cell lines. Of the 3 uterine leiomyosarcoma cell lines, CD70 expression was confirmed in SK-LMS-1 cells by western blotting and fluorescence-activated cell sorting analysis. CD70 overexpression was observed in 19 of 21 (90.5%) tumor specimens from women with uterine leiomyosarcoma. To generate CD70-antibody-drug conjugate, anti-CD70 monoclonal antibody was conjugated with a novel derivative of monomethyl auristatin F. CD70-antibody-drug conjugate showed significant antitumor effects on SK-LMS-1 cells (half maximal inhibitory concentration, 0.120 nM) and no antitumor effects on CD70-negative uterine leiomyosarcoma cells. CD70-antibody-drug conjugate significantly inhibited tumor growth in the SK-LMS-1 xenograft mouse model (tumor volume, 129.8 vs 285.5 mm; relative reduction, 54.5%; P<.001) and patient-derived xenograft mouse model (tumor volume, 128.1 vs 837.7 mm; relative reduction, 84.7%; P<.001).

Conclusion: Uterine leiomyosarcoma tumors highly express CD70 and targeted therapy with CD70-antibody-drug conjugate may have a potential therapeutic implication in the treatment of uterine leiomyosarcoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajog.2020.08.028DOI Listing
February 2021

Lung fibroblasts produce IL-33 in response to stimulation with retinoblastoma-binding protein 9 via production of prostaglandin E2.

Int Immunol 2020 09;32(10):637-652

Department of Immunology, Hyogo College of Medicine, Nishinomiya, Hyogo, Japan.

Intestinal nematode infection induces pulmonary eosinophilia via IL-33, although the mechanism of pulmonary IL-33 induction remains unclear. Because nematode migration damages lungs, we speculated that lung-derived damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) possess an IL-33-inducing activity (IL33ia). Indeed, intra-nasal administration of a lung extract induced IL-33 production in lungs. Additionally, lung extracts increased Il33 mRNA expression in primary lung fibroblasts. Proteomic analysis identified retinoblastoma-binding protein 9 (RBBP9) as a major DAMP with IL33ia. RBBP9 was originally discovered as a protein that provides cells with resistance to the growth inhibitory effect of transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1. Here, we found that stimulation by RBBP9 induced primary fibroblasts to produce prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) that, in turn, induced fibroblasts to produce IL-33. RBBP9-activated fibroblasts expressed mRNAs of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and PGE2 synthase-1 that convert arachidonic acid to PGE2. Furthermore, they expressed PGE2 receptors E-prostanoid (EP) 2 and EP4. Thus, treatment with a COX-2 inhibitor or EP2 and/or EP4 receptor antagonists inhibited RBBP9-induced IL-33 production. Nematode infection induced pulmonary Il33 mRNA expression, which was inhibited by the COX-2 inhibitor or EP2 and EP4 antagonists, suggesting that nematode infection induced pulmonary Il33 mRNA via PGE2. RBBP9 was expressed constitutively in the lung in the steady state, which did not increase after nematode infection. Finally, we found that Rbbp9-deficient mice had a significantly diminished capacity to increase pulmonary Il33 mRNA expression following nematode infection. Thus, the PGE2-EP2/EP4 pathway activated by RBBP9 released from damaged lungs is important for pulmonary IL-33 production in nematode-infected animals.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/intimm/dxaa031DOI Listing
September 2020

Correlation of increased serum leucine-rich α2-glycoprotein levels with disease prognosis, progression, and activity of interstitial pneumonia in patients with dermatomyositis: A retrospective study.

PLoS One 2020 1;15(6):e0234090. Epub 2020 Jun 1.

Center for Intractable Immune Disease, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Nankoku, Kochi, Japan.

Objective: To investigate whether leucine-rich α2-glycoprotein (LRG) can be a biomarker for the disease activity, progression, and prognosis of interstitial pneumonia (IP) in patients with dermatomyositis (DM).

Methods: Correlations between the clinical findings and serum LRG levels were investigated in 46 patients with DM-IP (33 with acute/subacute IP [A/SIP] and 13 patients with chronic IP [CIP], including 10 fatal cases of IP).

Results: The median serum LRG level of 18.4 (14.6-25.2) μg/mL in DM-IP patients was higher than that in healthy control subjects. The median levels of serum LRG at baseline and at 2 and 4 weeks after the initiation of treatment in the patients who died were significantly higher than those in the surviving patients (P = 0.026, 0.029, and 0.008, respectively). The median level of serum LRG in the DM-A/SIP patients was significantly higher than that in the DM-CIP patients (P = 0.0004), and that in the anti-MDA5-Ab-positive group was slightly higher than that in the anti-ARS-Ab-positive group. The serum LRG levels correlated significantly with the serum levels of LDH, C-reactive protein, ferritin, AaDO2, %DLco, and total ground-glass opacity score. The survival rate after 24 weeks in patients with an initial LRG level ≥ 17.6 μg/mL (survival rate: 40%) was significantly lower than that in patients with an initial LRG level < 17.6 μg/mL (100%) (P = 0.0009).

Conclusion: The serum LRG level may be a promising marker of disease activity, progression, and prognosis in patients with DM-IP.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0234090PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7263588PMC
August 2020

GPC1 specific CAR-T cells eradicate established solid tumor without adverse effects and synergize with anti-PD-1 Ab.

Elife 2020 03 31;9. Epub 2020 Mar 31.

Division of Cellular Signaling, Institute for Advanced Medical Research, Keio University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan.

Current xenogeneic mouse models cannot evaluate on-target off-tumor adverse effect, hindering the development of chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapies for solid tumors, due to limited human/mouse cross-reactivity of antibodies used in CAR and sever graft-versus-host disease induced by administered human T cells. We have evaluated safety and antitumor efficacy of CAR-T cells targeting glypican-1 (GPC1) overexpressed in various solid tumors. GPC1-specific human and murine CAR-T cells generated from our original anti-human/mouse GPC1 antibody showed strong antitumor effects in xenogeneic and syngeneic mouse models, respectively. Importantly, the murine CAR-T cells enhanced endogenous T cell responses against a non-GPC1 tumor antigen through the mechanism of antigen-spreading and showed synergistic antitumor effects with anti-PD-1 antibody without any adverse effects in syngeneic models. Our study shows the potential of GPC1 as a CAR-T cell target for solid tumors and the importance of syngeneic and xenogeneic models for evaluating their safety and efficacy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.49392DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7108862PMC
March 2020

Anti-glypican-1 antibody-drug conjugate is a potential therapy against pancreatic cancer.

Br J Cancer 2020 04 10;122(9):1333-1341. Epub 2020 Mar 10.

Laboratory of Immune Signal, National Institute of Biomedical Innovation, Health and Nutrition, Ibaraki, Japan.

Background: Pancreatic cancer (PDAC) is the most lethal malignancy. New treatment options for it are urgently required. The aim was to develop an antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) targeting glypican-1 (GPC-1) as a new therapy for PDAC.

Methods: We evaluated GPC-1 expression in resected PDAC specimens and PDAC cell lines. We then measured the antitumour effect of anti-GPC-1 monoclonal antibody conjugated with the cytotoxic agent monomethyl auristatin F (MMAF) in vitro and in vivo.

Results: GPC-1 was overexpressed in most primary PDAC cells and tissues. The PDAC cell lines BxPC-3 and T3M-4 strongly expressed GPC-1 relative to SUIT-2 cells. Compared with control ADC, GPC-1-ADC showed a potent antitumour effect against BxPC-3 and T3M-4, but little activity against SUIT-2 cells. In the xenograft and patient-derived tumour models, GPC-1-ADC significantly and potently inhibited tumour growth in a dose-dependent manner. GPC-1-ADC-mediated G2/M-phase cell cycle arrest was detected in the tumour tissues of GPC-1-ADC-treated mice relative to those of control-ADC-treated mice.

Conclusions: GPC-1-ADC showed significant tumour growth inhibition against GPC-1-positive pancreatic cell lines and patient-derived, GPC-1-positive pancreatic cancer tissues. Our preclinical data demonstrated that targeting GPC-1 with ADC is a promising therapy for patients with GPC-1-positive pancreatic cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41416-020-0781-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7189381PMC
April 2020

Leucine-rich alpha 2 glycoprotein is a new marker for active disease of tuberculosis.

Sci Rep 2020 02 25;10(1):3384. Epub 2020 Feb 25.

Department of Clinical Immunology, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Nankoku, 783-8505, Japan.

Tuberculosis (TB) caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) is a global health problem. At present, prior exposure to Mtb can be determined by blood-based interferon-gamma release assay (IGRA), but active TB is not always detectable by blood tests such as CRP and ESR. This study was undertaken to investigate whether leucine-rich alpha-2 glycoprotein (LRG), a new inflammatory biomarker, could be used to assess active disease of TB. Cynomolgus macaques pretreated with or without Bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccination were inoculated with Mtb to induce active TB. Blood was collected over time from these animals and levels of LRG as well as CRP and ESR were quantified. In the macaques without BCG vaccination, Mtb inoculation caused extensive TB and significantly increased plasma CRP and LRG levels, but not ESR. In the macaques with BCG vaccination, whereas Mtb challenge caused pulmonary TB, only LRG levels were significantly elevated. By immunohistochemical analysis of the lung, LRG was visualized in epithelioid cells and giant cells of the granulation tissue. In humans, serum LRG levels in TB patients were significantly higher than those in healthy controls and declined one month after anti-tubercular therapy. These findings suggest that LRG is a promising biomarker when performed following IGRA for the detection of active TB.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-60450-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7042324PMC
February 2020

TAS-116 inhibits oncogenic KIT signalling on the Golgi in both imatinib-naïve and imatinib-resistant gastrointestinal stromal tumours.

Br J Cancer 2020 03 20;122(5):658-667. Epub 2019 Dec 20.

Department of Gastroenterological Surgery, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine, Suita, Japan.

Background: Despite the effectiveness of imatinib mesylate (IM), most gastrointestinal stromal tumours (GISTs) develop IM resistance, mainly due to the additional kinase-domain mutations accompanied by concomitant reactivation of KIT tyrosine kinase. Heat-shock protein 90 (HSP90) is one of the chaperone molecules required for appropriate folding of proteins such as KIT.

Methods: We used a novel HSP90 inhibitor, TAS-116, which showed specific binding to HSP90α/β with low toxicity in animal models. The efficacy and mechanism of TAS-116 against IM-resistant GIST were evaluated by using IM-naïve and IM-resistant GIST cell lines. We also evaluated the effects of TAS-116 on the other HSP90 client protein, EGFR, by using lung cell lines.

Results: TAS-116 inhibited growth and induced apoptosis in both IM-naïve and IM-resistant GIST cell lines with KIT activation. We found KIT was activated mainly in intracellular compartments, such as trans-Golgi cisternae, and TAS-116 reduced autophosphorylated KIT in the Golgi apparatus. In IM-resistant GISTs in xenograft mouse models, TAS-116 caused tumour growth inhibition. We found that TAS-116 decreased phosphorylated EGFR levels and inhibited the growth of EGFR-mutated lung cancer cell lines.

Conclusion: TAS-116 may be a novel promising drug to overcome tyrosine kinase inhibitor-resistance in both GIST and EGFR-mutated lung cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41416-019-0688-yDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7054534PMC
March 2020

Copper ions are novel therapeutic agents for uterine leiomyosarcoma.

Am J Obstet Gynecol 2020 01 24;222(1):64.e1-64.e16. Epub 2019 Jul 24.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Osaka University, Osaka, Japan.

Background: Multidrug resistance is a major concern in uterine leiomyosarcoma treatment. Development of effective chemotherapies and management of drug resistance in patients is necessary. The copper efflux transporter adenosine triphosphatase copper transporting beta is a member of the P-type adenosine triphosphatase family and is also known as a strong platinum efflux transporter. Various reports have shown the association between adenosine triphosphatase copper transporting beta and platinum resistance; however, suitable inhibitors or methods for inhibiting platinum efflux via adenosine triphosphatase copper transporting beta are not developed.

Objective: Our study focused on platinum resistance in uterine leiomyosarcoma. The role of adenosine triphosphatase copper transporting beta in uterine leiomyosarcoma resistance to platinum drugs was investigated both in vitro and in vivo.

Study Design: Adenosine triphosphatase copper transporting beta expression was investigated by Western blotting and the efficacy of copper sulfate pretreatment and cisplatin administration in adenosine triphosphatase copper transporting beta-expressing cells was investigated both in vitro and in vivo.

Results: Western blot analysis of SK-LMS-1 cells (uterine leiomyosarcoma cell line) revealed strong adenosine triphosphatase copper transporting beta expression. A permanent SK-LMS-ATPase copper transporting beta-suppressed cell line (SK-LMS-7B cells) was generated, and cisplatin exhibited a significant antitumor effect in SK-LMS-7B cells, both in vitro (SK-LMS-1 cells, half-maximal inhibitory concentration, 17.2 μM; SK-LMS-7B cells, half-maximal inhibitory concentration, 4.2 μM, P < .01) and in xenografts compared with that in SK-LMS-1 cells (5.8% vs 62.8%, P < .01). Copper sulfate was identified as a preferential inhibitor of platinum efflux via adenosine triphosphatase copper transporting beta. In SK-LMS-1 cells pretreated with 15 μM copper sulfate for 3 hours, the cisplatin half-maximal inhibitory concentration decreased significantly compared with that in untreated cells and resulted in significantly increased intracellular platinum accumulation (1.9 pg/cell vs 8.6 pg/cell, P < .01). The combination of copper sulfate pretreatment with cisplatin administration was also effective in vivo and caused cisplatin to exhibit significantly increased antitumor effects in mice with SK-LMS-1 xenografts (3.1% vs 62.7%, P < .01).

Conclusion: Our study demonstrates that adenosine triphosphatase copper transporting beta is overexpressed in uterine leiomyosarcoma cells and that copper sulfate, which acts as an inhibitor of platinum efflux via adenosine triphosphatase copper transporting beta, may be a therapeutic agent in the treatment of uterine leiomyosarcoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajog.2019.07.030DOI Listing
January 2020

LRG is a novel inflammatory marker clinically useful for the evaluation of disease activity in rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease.

Immunol Med 2018 Jun 11;41(2):62-67. Epub 2018 Sep 11.

a Center for Intractable Immune Disease, Kochi Medical School , Kochi University , Nankoku , Japan.

By proteomic screening of sera obtained from patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), we previously identified leucine rich α2 glycoprotein (LRG) as a possible marker for inflammation. Unlike C-reactive protein (CRP), a biomarker widely used to evaluate inflammation, LRG is induced not only by IL-6 but also by other proinflammatory cytokines. In addition, LRG is upregulated not only in liver but also in local inflammatory sites. Therefore, serum LRG is a novel inflammatory marker applicable to evaluate inflammation in many diseases including ulcerative colitis in which serum CRP often fails to reflect disease activity and RA to which IL-6-blocking biologic agents such as tocilizumab are given as a first line therapy. Interestingly, evidence indicates that LRG is functionally involved in pathogenesis of inflammation, by promoting cellular proliferation, differentiation and angiogenesis via modulating TGF-β signaling.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13497413.2018.1481582DOI Listing
June 2018

Overexpression of SOCS3 mediated by adenovirus vector in mouse and human castration-resistant prostate cancer cells increases the sensitivity to NK cells in vitro and in vivo.

Cancer Gene Ther 2019 11 4;26(11-12):388-399. Epub 2019 Jan 4.

Division of Advanced Medical Science, Kobe University Graduate School of Science, Technology and Innovation, Kobe, Japan.

Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers in men. The overactivation of IL-6/JAK/STAT3 signaling and silencing of SOCS3 are frequently observed in prostate cancer. In the present study we undertook to develop Ad-SOCS3 gene therapy for the treatment of prostate cancer and also investigated whether Ad-SOCS3 increased sensitivity to NK cells. We demonstrated that Ad-SOCS3 could significantly inhibit growth of castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) cell lines expressing pSTAT3, DU-145 (at 10, 20, and 40 MOI), and TRAMP-C2 (at 40 MOI), but not the PC-3 CRPC cell line with the STAT3 gene deleted. Ad-SOCS3 (40 MOI) could suppress IL-6 production in DU-145 cells and PD-L1 expression induced by IFN-γ in TRAMP-C2 cells, and increased the NK cell sensitivity of both TRAMP-C2 and DU-145 cells. In the DU-145 mouse xenograft tumor model, intratumoral injections (twice/week for 3 weeks) of 1 × 10 pfu of Ad-SOCS3 significantly inhibited tumor growth and combining the Ad-SOCS3 treatment with intratumoral injections (once/week for 2 weeks) of 1 × 10 human NK cells showed the highest tumor growth inhibitory effect. These results suggested that a combination of Ad-SOCS3 gene therapy and NK cell immunotherapy could be a powerful treatment option for advanced CRPC overexpressing pSTAT3.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41417-018-0075-5DOI Listing
November 2019

Small Cell Carcinomas of the Uterine Cervix and Lung: Proteomics Reveals Similar Protein Expression Profiles.

Int J Gynecol Cancer 2018 11;28(9):1751-1757

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine.

Objective: The phenotypic and pathological features of small cell cervical carcinoma (SMCC) and small small cell lung cancer (SCLC) are very similar; thus, the chemotherapy regimens used for the rare SMCC have been routinely based on regimens used for common SCLC. We set out to explore the protein expression profile similarities between these 2 cancers to prove that linking their therapeutic regimens is justified, with a secondary aim of finding tumor-specific proteins to use as additional biomarkers for more accurate diagnosis of SMCC, and potentially to use as therapeutic targets.

Methods: Protein expression analysis was performed for 3 cases of SMCC and 1 example each of SCLC, mucinous adenocarcinoma of the cervix (MACC), lung mucinous adenocarcinoma (MACL), and squamous cell carcinoma of the cervix (SCC). We used cancer tissue-originated spheroids (CTOS) and isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ)-based comprehensive and quantitative protein expression profile analysis. Expression in corresponding clinical samples was verified by immunohistochemistry.

Results: Rather than organ of origin-specific patterns, the SMCC and SCLC samples revealed remarkably similar protein expression profiles-in agreement with their matching tumor pathology phenotypes. Sixteen proteins were expressed at least 2-fold higher in both small cell carcinomas (SMCC and SCLC) than in MACC or SCC. Immunohistochemical analysis confirmed higher expression of creatine kinase B-type in SMCC, compared with MACC and SCC.

Conclusions: We demonstrate a significant overlapping similarity of protein expression profiles of lung and cervical small cell carcinomas despite the significant differences in their organs of origin.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/IGC.0000000000001354DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6221385PMC
November 2018

Lipolysis-stimulated lipoprotein receptor overexpression is a novel predictor of poor clinical prognosis and a potential therapeutic target in gastric cancer.

Oncotarget 2018 Aug 31;9(68):32917-32928. Epub 2018 Aug 31.

Center for Intractable Immune Disease, Kochi University, Nankoku, Japan.

The prognosis of patients with advanced gastric cancer (GC) remains poor despite the recent advances in molecular targeted therapies, and the search for biomarkers that can predict prognosis and additional new agents with acceptable toxicity profiles are needed. Lipolysis-stimulated lipoprotein receptor (LSR) is a lipoprotein receptor that binds to triglyceride-rich lipoproteins and related to some malignancies. Herein, we examined the association between LSR expression and the prognosis of patients with GC, and investigated the antitumor effect of a previously developed anti-human LSR monoclonal antibody (#1-25). We first performed immunohistochemical analysis of LSR protein expression in GC and normal tissues, and then examined its association with the prognosis of 110 patients with GC. LSR was overexpressed in most of primary GC and metastatic tumors, but not in normal tissues. Patients with strong LSR expression ( = 80, 72.7%) had significantly poorer overall survival (OS) than those with weak expression ( = 0.017). Multivariate analysis identified strong LSR (as well as pT) as independent and significant prognostic factors for OS. Next, we demonstrated that very low density lipoprotein (VLDL) treatment increases cell proliferation in LSR-expressing GC cell lines ; LSR inhibition using #1-25 inhibited VLDL-induced proliferation by suppressing JAK/STAT and PI3K signaling. , we demonstrated a marked antitumor effect of #1-25 in 2 distinct GC cell line xenograft mice models. Our findings suggest that LSR plays a key functional role in GC development, and that this antigen can be therapeutically targeted to improve GC treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.25952DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6152476PMC
August 2018

NQO1 inhibits the TLR-dependent production of selective cytokines by promoting IκB-ζ degradation.

J Exp Med 2018 08 22;215(8):2197-2209. Epub 2018 Jun 22.

Department of Immunology and Pathology, Research Center for Hepatitis and Immunology, Research Institute, National Center for Global Health and Medicine, Chiba, Japan

NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1) protects cells against oxidative stress and toxic quinones. In this study, we found a novel role of NQO1 in suppressing Toll-like receptor (TLR)-mediated innate immune responses. NQO1-deficient macrophages selectively produced excessive amounts of IL-6, IL-12, and GM-CSF on LPS stimulation, and the deletion of NQO1 in macrophages exacerbated LPS-induced septic shock. NQO1 interacted with the nuclear IκB protein IκB-ζ, which is essential for the TLR-mediated induction of a subset of secondary response genes, including IL-6, and promoted IκB-ζ degradation in a ubiquitin-dependent manner. We demonstrated that PDLIM2, known as the ubiquitin E3 ligase, participates in NQO1-dependent IκB-ζ degradation. NQO1 augmented the association between PDLIM2 and IκB-ζ, resulting in increased IκB-ζ degradation. Collectively, this study describes a mechanism of the NQO1-PDLIM2 complex as a novel and important regulator in the innate immune signaling and suggests the therapeutic potential of NQO1 in TLR-mediated inflammation and disorders.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1084/jem.20172024DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6080903PMC
August 2018

Intratumoral Delivery of an Adenoviral Vector Carrying the Gene Enhances T-Cell-Mediated Antitumor Immunity By Suppressing PD-L1.

Mol Cancer Ther 2018 09 11;17(9):1941-1950. Epub 2018 Jun 11.

Laboratory of Immune Signal, National Institutes of Biomedical Innovation, Health and Nutrition, Ibaraki, Osaka, Japan.

Ovarian cancer is the leading cause of gynecologic cancer-related deaths and novel therapeutic strategies are required. Programmed cell death 1 and programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1), which are key mediators of host immune tolerance, are associated with ovarian cancer progression. Recent evidence indicates the importance of IFNγ-induced PD-L1 for immune tolerance in ovarian cancer. This study aimed to reveal the therapeutic potential of suppressor of cytokine signaling 1 (SOCS-1), an endogenous inhibitor of the Janus kinase (JAK)-STAT signaling pathway, for the treatment of ovarian cancer. IHC assessment revealed that patients with ovarian cancer with high intratumoral STAT1 activation exhibited poor prognosis compared with patients with low STAT1 activation ( < 0.05). Stimulation of OVISE, OVTOKO, OV2944-HM-1 (HM-1), and CT26 cell lines with IFNγ induced STAT1 phosphorylation and PD-L1 expression. Adenovirus-mediated gene delivery (AdSOCS-1) in HM-1 and CT26 cells potently inhibited IFNγ-induced STAT1 phosphorylation and PD-L1 upregulation, similar to the addition of JAK inhibitor I, but failed to inhibit their proliferation. Notably, intratumoral injection of AdSOCS-1, but not AdLacZ, significantly inhibited the tumor growth of HM-1 and CT26 cells subcutaneously transplanted in immunocompetent syngeneic mice. AdSOCS-1 reduced PD-L1 expression on tumors and restored the activation of tumor-infiltrating CD8 T cells. Moreover, the antitumor effect of AdSOCS-1 was significantly attenuated by PD-L1 Fc-fusion protein administration , suggesting that the effect of AdSOCS-1 is mainly attributable to enhancement of tumor immunity. This study highlights the potential clinical utility of SOCS-1 as an immune checkpoint inhibitor. .
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-17-0822DOI Listing
September 2018

SOCS1 gene therapy has antitumor effects in imatinib-resistant gastrointestinal stromal tumor cells through FAK/PI3 K signaling.

Gastric Cancer 2018 11 5;21(6):968-976. Epub 2018 Apr 5.

Center for Intractable Disease, Kochi University, Kohasu, Okocho, Nankoku, 783-8505, Japan.

Background: Most of the gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) have mutations in the KIT gene, encoding a receptor tyrosine kinase. Imatinib, a receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitor, is the first-line therapy for unresectable and metastatic GISTs. Despite the revolutionary effects of imatinib, some patients are primarily resistant to imatinib and many become resistant because of acquisition of secondary mutations in KIT. This study investigated the antitumor effects of SOCS1 gene therapy, which targets several signaling pathways.

Methods: We used GIST-T1 (imatinib-sensitive) and GIST-R8 (imatinib-resistant) cells. We infected both cell lines with an adenovirus expressing SOCS1 (AdSOCS1) and examined antitumor effect and mechanisms of its agent.

Results: The latter harboured with secondary KIT mutation and had imatinib resistance > 1000-fold higher than the former cells. We demonstrated that AdSOCS1 significantly decreased the proliferation and induced apoptosis in both cell lines. Moreover, SOCS1 overexpression inhibited the phosphorylation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3), AKT, and focal adhesion kinase (FAK) in both of them. Inhibition of JAK signaling did not affect the proliferation enough. However, inhibition of the FAK signaling with an FAK inhibitor or RNA interference significantly showed inhibitory effect on cell growth and suppressed the phosphorylation of AKT, indicating a cross-talk between the AKT and FAK pathways in both the imatinib-sensitive and imatinib-resistant GIST cells.

Conclusions: Our results indicate that the activation of FAK signaling is critical for proliferation of both imatinib-sensitive and -resistant GIST cells and the interference with FAK/AKT pathway might be beneficial for therapeutic target.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10120-018-0822-1DOI Listing
November 2018

Leucine rich α-2 glycoprotein is a potential urinary biomarker for renal tubular injury.

Biochem Biophys Res Commun 2018 04 17;498(4):1045-1051. Epub 2018 Mar 17.

Center for Intractable Immune Disease, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Nankoku, Kochi 783-8505, Japan. Electronic address:

Recent evidence suggests that renal tubular injury plays a key role in deterioration of renal function in both chronic kidney disease (CKD) and acute kidney injury (AKI). Since commonly used biochemical indicators such as GFR, serum creatinine, blood urea nitrogen and creatinine clearance are inappropriate for detecting alteration in renal tubules, biomarkers reflecting renal tubular injury have been extensively explored. Our research group identified leucine rich α-2 glycoprotein (LRG) as a novel serum biomarker for various inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease. In inflammatory diseases, LRG expression is up-regulated at the site of inflammation, in accordance with the induction of LRG in many cell types by various inflammatory cytokines. Recently, urinary LRG was reported as a possible biomarker for several renal diseases, but the mechanism of LRG excretion in urine is still unclear. In this study, by analyzing a mouse albumin (ALB) overload model that is commonly used to study proteinuria-induced renal tubular injury, we provided evidence that urinary LRG is produced in renal tubular epithelial cells by interleukin-1β (IL-1β) that is released during proteinuria-induced renal damage. In this model, urinary LRG became detectable after ALB overload. In kidney, mRNA expression of LRG together with that of NACHT LRR and PYD domains-containing protein 3 (NLRP3) and IL-1β was significantly up-regulated in ALB-overloaded mice, compared to PBS-treated mice. By pathological analysis of kidney, LRG was detected in the injured proximal tubules, distal tubules and collecting ducts in ALB-overloaded mice. Accordingly, in vitro stimulation of mouse renal cortical tubular epithelial cells with excessive ALB led to LRG mRNA up-regulation and its protein secretion, which was effectively blocked by IL-1 receptor antagonist. These results suggest that urinary LRG could be applied to a biomarker detecting renal tubular injury in various renal diseases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbrc.2018.03.111DOI Listing
April 2018

Leucine-rich -2 glycoprotein promotes lung fibrosis by modulating TGF- signaling in fibroblasts.

Physiol Rep 2017 12 26;5(24). Epub 2017 Dec 26.

Center for Intractable Immune Disease, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Nankoku, Japan.

TGF- has an important role in fibrotic diseases, including idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). Detailed analysis of TGF- signaling in pulmonary fibrosis at the molecular level is needed to identify novel therapeutic targets. Recently, leucine-rich alpha-2 glycoprotein (LRG) was reported to function as a modulator of TGF- signaling in angiogenesis and tumor progression. However, the involvement of LRG in fibrotic disorders, including IPF, has not yet been investigated. In this study, we investigated the role of LRG in fibrosis by analyzing LRG knockout (KO) mice with bleomycin-induced lung fibrosis, an animal model of pulmonary fibrosis. The amount of LRG in the lungs of wild-type (WT) mice was increased by bleomycin administration prior to fibrosis development. In LRG KO mice, lung fibrosis was significantly suppressed, as indicated by attenuated Masson's trichrome staining and lower collagen content than those in WT mice. Moreover, in the lungs of LRG KO mice, phosphorylation of Smad2 was reduced and expression of -SMA was decreased relative to those in WT mice. In vitro experiments indicated that LRG enhanced the TGF--induced phosphorylation of Smad2 and the expression of and , the downstream of Smad2, in fibroblasts. Although endoglin, an accessory TGF- receptor, is essential for LRG to promote TGF- signaling in endothelial cells during angiogenesis, we found that endoglin did not contribute to the ability of LRG to enhance Smad2 phosphorylation in fibroblasts. Taken together, our data suggest that LRG promotes lung fibrosis by modulating TGF--induced Smad2 phosphorylation and activating profibrotic responses in fibroblasts.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.14814/phy2.13556DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5742708PMC
December 2017

LSR Antibody Therapy Inhibits Ovarian Epithelial Tumor Growth by Inhibiting Lipid Uptake.

Cancer Res 2018 01 29;78(2):516-527. Epub 2017 Nov 29.

Laboratory of Immune Signal, National Institute of Biomedical Innovation, Health and Nutrition, Osaka, Japan.

Epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is the most lethal gynecologic malignancy, but it still lacks effective treatment options. In this study, we utilized proteomic technology to identify lipolysis-stimulated lipoprotein receptor (LSR) as a new tumor antigen of EOC. Immunohistochemical analysis of EOC tissues in conjunction with survival analysis of EOC patients showed that high expression of LSR is associated with poor prognosis. High LSR expression also occurred in tumor metastases including to the lymph node and omentum. To evaluate the possible benefits of blocking this antigen in EOC, we raised a new monoclonal antibody (mAb) to human LSR (hLSR). In mouse xenograft models of hLSR EOC (cell lines or patient-derived tumors), we found that administration of anti-hLSR mAb inhibited tumor growth in a manner independent of both antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity and complement-dependent cytotoxicity. Mechanistic investigations showed that hLSR expression increased incorporation of very-low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) into EOC cells and that anti-hLSR mAb inhibited lipid uptake and Moreover, VLDL promoted cell proliferation in hLSR-positive EOC cells , and this effect was inhibited by anti-hLSR mAb. While the anti-hLSR mAb studied cross reacted with the mouse antigen, we observed no adverse effects on normal organs and lipid metabolism in murine hosts. Our findings suggest that hLSR plays a key functional role in EOC development and that this antigen can be therapeutically targeted by specific mAb to improve EOC treatment. These findings offer preclinical evidence of the therapeutic efficacy of a novel targeted antibody therapy against deadly epithelial ovarian cancers. .
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-17-0910DOI Listing
January 2018

Anti-glypican-1 antibody-drug conjugate exhibits potent preclinical antitumor activity against glypican-1 positive uterine cervical cancer.

Int J Cancer 2018 03 31;142(5):1056-1066. Epub 2017 Oct 31.

Laboratory of Immune Signal, National Institutes of Biomedical Innovation, Health and Nutrition, Ibaraki, Osaka, Japan.

Glypican-1 (GPC1) is highly expressed in solid tumors, especially squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs), and is thought to be associated with disease progression. We explored the use of a GPC1-targeted antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) as a novel treatment for uterine cervical cancer. On immunohistochemical staining, high expression levels of GPC1 were detected in about 50% of uterine cervical cancer tissues and also in a tumor that had relapsed after chemoradiotherapy. Novel anti-GPC1 monoclonal antibodies were developed, and clone 01a033 was selected as the best antibody for targeted delivery of the cytotoxic agent monomethyl auristatin F (MMAF) into GPC1-positive cells. The anti-GPC1 antibody was conjugated with MMAF. On flow cytometry, HeLa and ME180 cervical cancer cells highly expressed GPC1, however, RMG-I ovarian clear cell cancer cell line showed weak expression. The GPC1-ADC was rapidly internalized into GPC1-expressing cells in vitro and was potently cytotoxic to cancer cells highly expressing GPC1. There were no inhibitory effects on cancer cells with low expression of GPC1. In a murine xenograft model, GPC1-ADC also had significant and potent tumor growth inhibition. GPC1-ADC-mediated G2/M phase cell cycle arrest was detected, indicating that the dominant antitumor effect in vivo was MMAF-mediated. The toxicity of GPC-ADC was tolerable within the therapeutic dose range in mice. Our data showed that GPC1-ADC has potential as a promising therapy for uterine cervical cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ijc.31124DOI Listing
March 2018
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