Targeted drug delivery to mesothelioma cells using functionally selected internalizing human single-chain antibodies

Molecular Cancer Therapeutics. 2008 Mar;7(3):569-78. Epub 2008 Mar 4. [Link]

An F, Drummond DC, Wilson S, Kirpotin DB, Nishimura SL, Broaddus VC, Liu B.

Department of Anesthesia, University of California-San Francisco, 1001 Potrero Avenue, 3C38, San Francisco, CA 94110.


Mesothelioma is a malignancy of the mesothelium and current treatments are generally ineffective. One promising area of anticancer drug development is to explore tumor susceptibility to targeted therapy. To achieve efficient, targeted intracellular delivery of therapeutic agents to mesothelioma cells, we selected a naive human single-chain (scFv) phage antibody display library directly on the surface of live mesothelioma cells to identify internalizing antibodies that target mesothelioma-associated cell surface antigens. We have identified a panel of internalizing scFvs that bind to mesothelioma cell lines derived from both epithelioid (M28) and sarcomatous (VAMT-1) types of this disease. Most importantly, these antibodies stain mesothelioma cells in situ and therefore define a panel of clinically represented tumor antigens. We have further exploited the internalizing function of these scFvs to achieve targeted intracellular drug delivery to mesothelioma cells. We showed that scFv-targeted immunoliposomes were efficiently and specifically taken up by both epithelioid and sarcomatous mesothelioma cells, but not control cells, and immunoliposomes encapsulating the small-molecule drug topotecan caused targeted killing of both types of mesothelioma cells in vitro.