Targeting tumor-associated macrophages in an experimental glioma model with a recombinant immunotoxin to folate receptor β
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- Nagai, T., Tanaka, M., Tsuneyoshi, Y. et al. Cancer Immunol Immunother (2009) 58: 1577. doi:10.1007/s00262-009-0667-x
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Tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) are frequently found in glioblastomas and a high degree of macrophage infiltration is associated with a poor prognosis for glioblastoma patients. However, it is unclear whether TAMs in glioblastomas promote tumor growth. In this study, we found that folate receptor β (FRβ) was expressed on macrophages in human glioblastomas and a rat C6 glioma implanted subcutaneously in nude mice. To target FRβ-expressing TAMs, we produced a recombinant immunotoxin consisting of immunoglobulin heavy and light chain Fv portions of an anti-mouse FRβ monoclonal antibody and Pseudomonas exotoxin A. Injection of the immunotoxin into C6 glioma xenografts in nude mice significantly depleted TAMs and reduced tumor growth. The immunotoxin targeting FRβ-expressing macrophages will provide a therapeutic tool for human glioblastomas.