Fluorine-18 Labeling of the HER2-Targeting Single-Domain Antibody 2Rs15d Using a Residualizing Label and Preclinical Evaluation
Our previous studies with F-18-labeled anti-HER2 single-domain antibodies (sdAbs) utilized 5F7, which binds to the same epitope on HER2 as trastuzumab, complicating its use for positron emission tomography (PET) imaging of patients undergoing trastuzumab therapy. On the other hand, sdAb 2Rs15d binds to a different epitope on HER2 and thus might be a preferable vector for imaging in these patients. The aim of this study was to evaluate the tumor targeting of F-18 -labeled 2Rs15d in HER2-expressing breast carcinoma cells and xenografts.
sdAb 2Rs15d was labeled with the residualizing labels N-succinimidyl 3-((4-(4-[18F]fluorobutyl)-1H-1,2,3-triazol-1-yl)methyl)-5-(guanidinomethyl)benzoate ([18F]RL-I) and N-succinimidyl 4-guanidinomethyl-3-[125I]iodobenzoate ([125I]SGMIB), and the purity and HER2-specific binding affinity and immunoreactivity were assessed after labeling. The biodistribution of I-125- and F-18-labeled 2Rs15d was determined in SCID mice bearing subcutaneous BT474M1 xenografts. MicroPET/x-ray computed tomograph (CT) imaging of [18F]RL-I-2Rs15d was performed in this model and compared to that of nonspecific sdAb [18F]RL-I-R3B23. MicroPET/CT imaging was also done in an intracranial HER2-positive breast cancer brain metastasis model after administration of 2Rs15d-, 5F7-, and R3B23-[18F]RL-I conjugates.
[18F]RL-I was conjugated to 2Rs15d in 40.8 ± 9.1 % yield and with a radiochemical purity of 97–100 %. Its immunoreactive fraction (IRF) and affinity for HER2-specific binding were 79.2 ± 5.4 % and 7.1 ± 0.4 nM, respectively. [125I]SGMIB was conjugated to 2Rs15d in 58.4 ± 8.2 % yield and with a radiochemical purity of 95–99 %; its IRF and affinity for HER2-specific binding were 79.0 ± 12.9 % and 4.5 ± 0.8 nM, respectively. Internalized radioactivity in BT474M1 cells in vitro for [18F]RL-I-2Rs15d was 43.7 ± 3.6, 36.5 ± 2.6, and 21.7 ± 1.2 % of initially bound radioactivity at 1, 2, and 4 h, respectively, and was similar to that seen for [125I]SGMIB-2Rs15d. Uptake of [18F]RL-I-2Rs15d in subcutaneous xenografts was 16–20 %ID/g over 1–3 h. Subcutaneous tumor could be clearly delineated by microPET/CT imaging with [18F]RL-I-2Rs15d but not with [18F]RL-I-R3B23. Intracranial breast cancer brain metastases could be visualized after intravenous administration of both [18F]RL-I-2Rs15d and [18F]RL-I-5F7.
Although radiolabeled 2Rs15d conjugates exhibited lower tumor cell retention both in vitro and in vivo than that observed previously for 5F7, given that it binds to a different epitope on HER2 from those targeted by the clinically utilized HER2-targeted therapeutic antibodies trastuzumab and pertuzumab, F-18-labeled 2Rs15d has potential for assessing HER2 status by PET imaging after trastuzumab and/or pertuzumab therapy.
Key wordsSingle-domain antibody Trastuzumab HER2 Fluorine-18 PET Breast cancer
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