Combination radioimmunotherapy and chemoimmunotherapy involving different or the same targets improves therapy of human pancreatic carcinoma xenograft models

Mol Cancer Ther. 2011 Jun;10(6):1072-81. doi: 10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-11-0115. Epub 2011 Apr 5.


Chemoimmunotherapy with antibody-drug conjugates (ADC) is emerging as a promising therapy for solid tumors, whereas radioimmunotherapy (RAIT) of solid tumors has been relatively ineffective because of their resistance to radiation. We developed antibody-SN-38 conjugates that have significant antitumor activity in xenograft models at nontoxic doses. The goal of this study was to determine if an ADC could be combined with RAIT to enhance efficacy without a commensurate increase in host toxicity. Nude mice bearing human pancreatic cancer xenografts (Capan-1 and BxPC-3) were treated with a single dose of 90Y-labeled antimucin antibody (hPAM4; clivatuzumab tetraxetan) alone or in combination with an anti-Trop-2-SN-38 conjugate, typically administered twice weekly over 4 weeks. The combination, even at RAIT's maximum tolerated dose, controlled tumor progression and cured established xenografts significantly better than the individual treatments without appreciable toxicity. The ADC could be started 1 week after or up to 2 weeks before RAIT with similar enhanced responses, but delaying RAIT for 2 weeks after the ADC was less effective. A nonspecific ADC provided additional benefit over using free drug (irinotecan), but the response was enhanced with the specific ADC. When targeting Capan-1 with ample mucin, hPAM4 could be used as the RAIT and the ADC agent without losing effectiveness, but in BxPC-3 with less mucin, targeting of different antigens was preferred. These studies show the feasibility of combining ADC and RAIT for improved efficacy without increased toxicity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / administration & dosage
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / pharmacology*
  • Antibodies, Neoplasm / administration & dosage
  • Antibodies, Neoplasm / pharmacology*
  • Camptothecin / analogs & derivatives
  • Camptothecin / pharmacology
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunotoxins / administration & dosage
  • Immunotoxins / pharmacology*
  • Irinotecan
  • Mice
  • Mice, Nude
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy / methods
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Radioimmunotherapy / methods*
  • Xenograft Model Antitumor Assays
  • Yttrium Radioisotopes / administration & dosage
  • Yttrium Radioisotopes / chemistry


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antibodies, Neoplasm
  • Immunotoxins
  • Yttrium Radioisotopes
  • Irinotecan
  • clivatuzumab
  • Camptothecin