Galactosylated antibodies and antibody-enzyme conjugates in antibody-directed enzyme prodrug therapy

Cancer. 1994 Feb 1;73(3 Suppl):1114-20. doi: 10.1002/1097-0142(19940201)73:3+<1114::aid-cncr2820731352>;2-l.


Antibody directed enzyme prodrug therapy (ADEPT) has been studied as a two- and three-phase system in which an antibody to a tumor-associated antigen has been used to deliver an enzyme to tumor sites where it can convert a relatively nontoxic prodrug to a cytotoxic agent. In such a system, it is necessary to allow the enzyme activity to clear from the blood before prodrug injection to avoid toxicity caused by prodrug activation in plasma. To accelerate plasma clearance of enzyme activity, two approaches have been studied. The studies have been performed with a monoclonal anticarcinoembryonic-antigen antibody fragment A5B7-F(ab')2 conjugated to a bacterial enzyme, carboxypeptidase G2 (CPG2), in LS174T xenografted mice. In the first approach, a monoclonal antibody (SB43), directed at CPG2, was used, which inactivates CPG2 in vitro and in vivo. SB43 was galactosylated so that it had sufficient time to form a complex with plasma CPG2, resulting in the inactivation and clearance of the complex from plasma via the carbohydrate-specific receptors in the liver. Injection of SB43gal 19 hours after administration of the radiolabeled conjugate reduced the percentage of injected dose per gram in blood without affecting levels in the tumor. The second approach involved galactosylation of the conjugate so that it cleared rapidly from blood via the asialoglycoprotein receptors in the liver. Localization of the radiolabeled conjugate was achieved by blocking this receptor for about 8 hours with a single injection (8 mg/mouse) of an inhibitor that binds competitively to the receptor. This allowed tumor localization of the conjugate followed by a rapid clearance of the galactosylated conjugate from blood as the inhibitor was consumed. A tumor-to-blood ratio of 45:1 was obtained at 24 hours, which increased to 100:1 at 72 hours after the conjugate injection. These accelerated clearance mechanisms have been applied in antitumor studies in ADEPT.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / pharmacology*
  • Antibodies, Neoplasm / pharmacology*
  • Carcinoembryonic Antigen / immunology*
  • Galactose / metabolism
  • Iodine Radioisotopes / therapeutic use
  • Mice
  • Mice, Nude
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / metabolism
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / radiotherapy
  • Prodrugs / therapeutic use*
  • Radioimmunotherapy / methods*
  • Time Factors
  • gamma-Glutamyl Hydrolase / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • gamma-Glutamyl Hydrolase / immunology


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antibodies, Neoplasm
  • Carcinoembryonic Antigen
  • Iodine Radioisotopes
  • Prodrugs
  • gamma-Glutamyl Hydrolase
  • Galactose