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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Regression/eradication of gliomas in mice by a systemically-deliverable ATF5 dominant-negative peptide.

  • Author(s): Cates, Charles
  • Arias, Angelo
  • Nakayama Wong, Lynn
  • Lamé, Michael
  • Sidorov, Maxim
  • Cayanan, Geraldine
  • Rowland, Douglas
  • Fung, Jennifer
  • Karpel-Massler, Georg
  • Siegelin, Markus
  • Greene, Lloyd
  • Angelastro, James
  • et al.

Malignant gliomas have poor prognosis and urgently require new therapies. Activating Transcription Factor 5 (ATF5) is highly expressed in gliomas, and interference with its expression/function precipitates targeted glioma cell apoptosis in vitro and in vivo. We designed a novel deliverable truncated-dominant-negative (d/n) form of ATF5 fused to a cell-penetrating domain (Pen-d/n-ATF5-RP) that can be intraperitoneally/subcutaneously administered to mice harboring malignant gliomas generated; (1) by PDGF-B/sh-p53 retroviral transformation of endogenous neural progenitor cells; and (2) by human U87-MG xenografts. In vitro Pen-d/n-ATF5-RP entered into glioma cells and triggered massive apoptosis. In vivo, subcutaneously-administered Pen-d/n-ATF5-RP passed the blood brain barrier, entered normal brain and tumor cells, and then caused rapid selective tumor cell death. MRI verified elimination of retrovirus-induced gliomas within 8-21 days. Histopathology revealed growth-suppression of intracerebral human U87-MG cells xenografts. For endogenous PDGF-B gliomas, there was no recurrence or mortality at 6-12 months versus 66% mortality in controls at 6 months. Necropsy and liver-kidney blood enzyme analysis revealed no adverse effects on brain or other tissues. Our findings thus identify Pen-d/n-ATF5-RP as a potential therapy for malignant gliomas.

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