Antiinflammatory Activity of a Novel Folic Acid Targeted Conjugate of the mTOR Inhibitor Everolimus
Folate receptor (FR)-β has been identified as a promising target for antimacrophage and antiinflammatory therapies. In the present study, we investigated EC0565, a folic acid-derivative of everolimus, as a FR-specific inhibitor of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR). Because of its amphiphilic nature, EC0565 was first evaluated for water solubility, critical micelle formation, stability in culture and FR-binding specificity. Using FR-expressing macrophages, the effect of EC0565 on mTOR signaling and cellular proliferation was studied. The pharmacokinetics, metabolism and bioavailability of EC0565 were studied in normal rats. The in vivo activity of EC0565 was assessed in rats with adjuvant arthritis, a “macrophage-rich” model with close resemblance to rheumatoid arthritis. EC0565 forms micellar aggregates in physiological buffers and demonstrates good water solubility as well as strong multivalent FR-binding capacity. EC0565 inhibited mTOR signaling in rat macrophages at nanomolar concentrations and induced G0/G1 cell cycle arrest in serum-starved RAW264.7 cells. Subcutaneously administered EC0565 in rats displayed good bioavailability and a relatively long half-life (∼12 h). When given at 250 nmol/kg, EC0565 selectively inhibited proliferating cell nuclear antigen expression in thioglycollate-stimulated rat peritoneal cells. With limited dosing regimens, the antiarthritic activity of EC0565 was found superior to that of etanercept, everolimus and a nontargeted everolimus analog. The in vivo activity of EC0565 was also comparable to that of a folate-targeted aminopterin. Folate-targeted mTOR inhibition may be an effective way of suppressing activated macrophages in sites of inflammation, especially in nutrient-deprived conditions, such as in the arthritic joints. Further investigation and improvement upon the physical and biochemical properties of EC0565 are warranted.
- 13.Nagai T, et al. (2010) Effect of an immunotoxin to folate receptor beta on bleomycin-induced experimental pulmonary fibrosis. Clin. Exp. lmmunol. 161:348–56.Google Scholar
- 35.Vlahov IR, et al. (2010) Design and synthesis of folate conjugates of rapamycin and everolimus. Presented at: 240th ACS National Meeting; 2010 Aug 22–26; Boston, MA.Google Scholar
- 38.Temple CJ, Montgomery JA. (1984) Chemistry and biochemistry of folates. In: Folates and Pterins. Blakley RL, Benkovic SJ (eds.) New York, John Wiley & Sons, pp. 61.Google Scholar
Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License, which permits any non-commercial use, sharing, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, and provide a link to the Creative Commons license. You do not have permission under this license to share adapted material derived from this article or parts of it.
The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder.
To view a copy of this license, visit (https://doi.org/creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/)