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Fibroblast Growth Factor 2 Conjugated with Monomethyl Auristatin E Inhibits Tumor Growth in a Mouse Model

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journal contribution
posted on 20.09.2021, 18:40 by Mateusz A. Krzyscik, Malgorzata Zakrzewska, Vigdis Sørensen, Geir Frode Øy, Skjalg Brunheim, Ellen M. Haugsten, Gunhild M. Mælandsmo, Antoni Wiedlocha, Jacek Otlewski
Worldwide, cancer is the second leading cause of death. Regardless of the continuous progress in medicine, we still do not have a fully effective anti-cancer therapy. Therefore, the search for new targeted anti-cancer drugs is still an unmet need. Here, we present novel protein–drug conjugates that inhibit tumor growth in a mouse model of human breast cancer. We developed conjugates based on fibroblast growth factor (FGF2) with improved biophysical and biological properties for the efficient killing of cancer cells overproducing fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 (FGFR1). We used hydrophilic and biocompatible PEG4 or PEG27 molecules as a spacer between FGF2 and the toxic agent monomethyl auristatin E. All conjugates exhibited a cytotoxic effect on FGFR1-positive cancer cell lines. The conjugate with the highest hydrodynamic size (42 kDa) and cytotoxicity was found to efficiently inhibit tumor growth in a mouse model of human breast cancer.