Background: HER2-based retargeted viruses are in advanced phases of preclinical development of breast cancer models. Mesothelin (MSLN) is a cell-surface tumor antigen expressed in different subtypes of breast and non-breast cancer. Its recent identification as a marker of some triple-negative breast tumors renders it an attractive target, presently investigated in clinical trials employing antibody drug conjugates and CAR-T cells. The availability of MSLN-retargeted oncolytic viruses may complement the current immunotherapeutic panel of biological drugs against HER2-negative breast and non-breast tumors. Methods: A fully virulent, tumor-targeted oncolytic Herpes simplex virus-1 (MSLN-THV) with a selectivity for mesothelin-expressing cancer cells was generated. Recombineering technology was used to replace an essential moiety of the viral glycoprotein D with antibody fragments derived from clinically validated MSLN monoclonal antibodies, and to allow IL12 cargo expression in infected cells. Panels of breast and female reproductive system cell lines were used to verify the oncolytic potential of the viral constructs. A platform for production of the retargeted viruses was developed in HEK 293 cells, providing stable expression of a suitable chimeric receptor. Results: We demonstrated the selectivity of viral infection and cytotoxicity by MSLN-retargeted viruses in a panel of mesothelin-positive cancer cells, originating from breast and female reproductive system tumors. We also developed a second-generation oncolytic MSLN-THV, encoding IL12, to enhance the immunotherapeutic potential of the viral backbone. A non-tumor cell line expressing a chimeric MSLN/Nectin-1 receptor, de-sensitized from antiviral responses by genetic inactivation of the Stimulator of Interferon Genes (STING)-dependent pathway was engi-neered, to optimize viral yields. Conclusions: Our proof-of-concept study proposes MSLN-retargeted herpesviruses as potential cancer immunotherapeutics for assessments in preclinical models of MSLN-positive tumors, complementing the available panel of oncolytic viruses to HER2-negative breast tumors.

Generation of a novel mesothelin-targeted oncolytic herpes virus and implemented strategies for manufacturing

Froechlich G.;Gentile C.;Caiazza C.;Pagano P.;Scatigna S.;Nicosia A.;Mallardo M.;Sasso E.;Zambrano N.
2021

Abstract

Background: HER2-based retargeted viruses are in advanced phases of preclinical development of breast cancer models. Mesothelin (MSLN) is a cell-surface tumor antigen expressed in different subtypes of breast and non-breast cancer. Its recent identification as a marker of some triple-negative breast tumors renders it an attractive target, presently investigated in clinical trials employing antibody drug conjugates and CAR-T cells. The availability of MSLN-retargeted oncolytic viruses may complement the current immunotherapeutic panel of biological drugs against HER2-negative breast and non-breast tumors. Methods: A fully virulent, tumor-targeted oncolytic Herpes simplex virus-1 (MSLN-THV) with a selectivity for mesothelin-expressing cancer cells was generated. Recombineering technology was used to replace an essential moiety of the viral glycoprotein D with antibody fragments derived from clinically validated MSLN monoclonal antibodies, and to allow IL12 cargo expression in infected cells. Panels of breast and female reproductive system cell lines were used to verify the oncolytic potential of the viral constructs. A platform for production of the retargeted viruses was developed in HEK 293 cells, providing stable expression of a suitable chimeric receptor. Results: We demonstrated the selectivity of viral infection and cytotoxicity by MSLN-retargeted viruses in a panel of mesothelin-positive cancer cells, originating from breast and female reproductive system tumors. We also developed a second-generation oncolytic MSLN-THV, encoding IL12, to enhance the immunotherapeutic potential of the viral backbone. A non-tumor cell line expressing a chimeric MSLN/Nectin-1 receptor, de-sensitized from antiviral responses by genetic inactivation of the Stimulator of Interferon Genes (STING)-dependent pathway was engi-neered, to optimize viral yields. Conclusions: Our proof-of-concept study proposes MSLN-retargeted herpesviruses as potential cancer immunotherapeutics for assessments in preclinical models of MSLN-positive tumors, complementing the available panel of oncolytic viruses to HER2-negative breast tumors.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11588/838255
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