A Flow Cytometric Method to Quantify the Endosomal Escape of a Protein Toxin to the Cytosol of Target Cells.
ABSTRACT: PURPOSE:The aim of this work was to develop a quantitative, flow cytometric method for tracking the endolysosomal escape of a fluorescently labelled saporin toxin. METHODS:Flow cytometric measurements of fluorescent pulse width and height were used to track the endocytic uptake into Daudi cells of a fluorescently labelled saporin toxin and the saporin based immunotoxin, OKT10-SAP. Subsequently, measurement of changes in pulse width were used to investigate the effect of a triterpenoid saponin on the endolysosomal escape of internalised toxin into the cytosol. Live cell confocal microscopy was used to validate the flow cytometry data. RESULTS:Increased endolysosomal escape of saporin and OKT10-SAP was observed by confocal microscopy in cells treated with saponin. Fluorescent pulse width measurements were also able to detect and quantify escape more sensitively than confocal microscopy. Saponin induced endolysosomal escape could be abrogated by treatment with chloroquine, an inhibitor of endolysosomal acidification. Chloroquine abrogation of escape was also mirrored by a concomitant abrogation of cytotoxicity. CONCLUSIONS:Poor endolysosomal escape is often a rate limiting step for the cytosolic delivery of protein toxins and other macromolecules. Pulse width analysis offers a simple method to semi-quantify the endolysosomal escape of this and similar molecules into the cytosol.
Project description:Triterpenoid saponins augment the cytotoxicity of saporin based immunotoxins. It is postulated that this results from a saponin-mediated increase in the endolysosomal escape of the toxin to the cytosol, but this remains to be confirmed. To address this issue, we used a number of pharmacological inhibitors of endocytic processes as probes to investigate the role played by saponin in the endolysosomal escape of fluorescently labeled saporin and a saporin based immunotoxin targeted against CD38 on human lymphoma and leukemia cell lines. Endolysosomal escape of the toxin was measured by flow cytometric pulse shape analysis. These results were compared to the effects of the various inhibitors on the saponin-mediated augmentation of toxin and immunotoxin cytotoxicity. Inhibitors of clathrin-mediated endocytosis, micropinocytosis, and endosomal acidification abrogated the saponin-induced increase in the endolysosomal escape of the toxin into the cytosol, suggesting that these processes may be involved in the internalization of saponin to the same endolysosomal vesicle as the toxin. Alternatively, these processes may play a direct role in the mechanism by which saponin promotes toxin escape from the endolysosomal compartment to the cytosol. Correlation with the effects of these inhibitors on the augmentation of cytotoxicity provides additional evidence that endolysosomal escape is involved in driving augmentation.
Project description:Cholesterol seems to play a central role in the augmentation of saporin-based immunotoxin (IT) cytotoxicity by triterpenoid saponins. Endolysosomal escape has been proposed as one mechanism for the saponin-mediated enhancement of targeted toxins. We investigated the effects of lipid depletion followed by repletion on <i>Saponinum album</i> (SA)-induced endolysosomal escape of Alexa Fluor labelled saporin and the saporin-based immunotoxin OKT10-SAP, directed against CD38, in Daudi lymphoma cells. Lipid deprived cells showed reduced SA-induced endolysosomal escape at two concentrations of SA, as determined by a flow cytometric method. The repletion of membrane cholesterol by low density lipoprotein (LDL) restored SA-induced endolysosomal escape at a concentration of 5 µg/mL SA but not at 1 µg/mL SA. When LDL was used to restore the cholesterol levels in lipid deprived cells, the SA augmentation of OKT10-SAP cytotoxicity was partially restored at 1 µg/mL SA and fully restored at 5 µg/mL SA. These results suggest that different mechanisms of action might be involved for the two different concentrations of SA and that endosomal escape may not be the main mechanism for the augmentation of saporin IT cytotoxicity by SA at the sub-lytic concentration of 1 µg/mL SA.
Project description:Saporin (SAP) is an Ribosomal inactivation protein (RIP) toxin molecule. Conjugating SAP with EpCAM Antibody will direct the toxin pay loads to the EpCAM positive cancer cells as a targeted therapy We used microarrays to detail the global gene expression to understand the pathways involved in EpCAM-mediated SAP drug delivery in breast cancer cells. Overall design: MCF-7 breast cancer cells were cultured and treated with Saporin and Saporin-EpCAM Antibody conjugate for the duration of 24h. RNA was extracted from cells and hybridized onto Affymetrix Human PrimeView arrays. To understand the changes in the transcriptome, we have included untreated MCF-7 cells (Controls; C1, C2- were taken from our own data Accession number:GSE69160) along with treated cells (SAP_1, SAP_2, SAP-CONJ_1, SAP CONJ_2).
Project description:Triterpenoid saponins from <i>Saponinum album</i> (SA) significantly augment the cytotoxicity of saporin-based immunotoxins but the mechanism of augmentation is not fully understood. We investigated the effects of six small molecule pharmacological agents, which interfere with endocytic and other processes, on SA-mediated augmentation of saporin and saporin-based immunotoxins (ITs) directed against CD7, CD19, CD22 and CD38 on human lymphoma and leukaemia cell lines. Inhibition of clathrin-mediated endocytosis or endosomal acidification abolished the SA augmentation of saporin and of all four immunotoxins tested but the cytotoxicity of each IT or saporin alone was largely unaffected. The data support the hypothesis that endocytic processes are involved in the augmentative action of SA for saporin ITs targeted against a range of antigens expressed by leukaemia and lymphoma cells. In addition, the reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenger tiron reduced the cytotoxicity of BU12-SAP and OKT10-SAP but had no effect on 4KB128-SAP or saporin cytotoxicity. Tiron also had no effect on SA-mediated augmentation of the saporin-based ITs or unconjugated saporin. These results suggest that ROS are not involved in the augmentation of saporin ITs and that ROS induction is target antigen-dependent and not directly due to the cytotoxic action of the toxin moiety.
Project description:Protein-based therapeutics with cytosolic targets are capable of exhibiting their therapeutic effect once they have escaped from the endosomes or lysosomes. In this study, the reporters-horseradish peroxidase (HRP), Alexa Fluor 488 (Alexa) and ricin A-chain (RTA)-were investigated for their capacity to monitor the endo/lysosomal escape of the ribosome-inactivating protein, saporin. The conjugates-saporin-HRP, (Alexa)saporin and saporin-KQ-RTA-were constructed, and the endo/lysosomal escape of these conjugates alone (lack of endo/lysosomal release) or in combination with certain structurally-specific triterpenoidal saponins (efficient endo/lysosomal escape) was characterized. HRP failed in reporting the endo/lysosomal escape of saporin. Contrastingly, Alexa Fluor 488 successfully allowed the report of the process at a toxin concentration of 1000 nM. In addition, single endo/lysosome analysis facilitated the determination of the amount of (Alexa)saporin released from each vesicle. RTA was also successful in reporting the endo/lysosomal escape of the enzymatically inactive mutant, saporin-KQ, but in this case, the sensitivity of the method reached a toxin concentration of 10 nM. In conclusion, the simultaneous usage of Alexa Fluor 488 and RTA as reporters may provide the possibility of monitoring the endo/lysosomal escape of protein-based therapeutics in the concentration range of 10-1000 nM.
Project description:Endosomal entrapment is a key issue for the intracellular delivery of many nano-sized biotherapeutics to their cytosolic or nuclear targets. Photochemical internalisation (PCI) is a novel light-based solution that can be used to trigger the endosomal escape of a range of bioactive agents into the cytosol leading to improved efficacy in pre-clinical and clinical studies. PCI typically depends upon the endolysosomal colocalisation of the bioactive agent with a suitable photosensitiser that is administered separately. In this study we demonstrate that both these components may be combined for codelivery via a novel multifunctional liposomal nanocarrier, with a corresponding increase in the biological efficacy of the encapsulated agent. As proof of concept, we show here that the cytotoxicity of the 30 kDa protein toxin, saporin, in MC28 fibrosarcoma cells is significantly enhanced when delivered via a cell penetrating peptide (CPP)-modified liposome, with the CPP additionally functionalised with a photosensitiser that is targeted to endolysosomal membranes. This innovation opens the way for the efficient delivery of a range of biotherapeutics by the PCI approach, incorporating a clinically proven liposome delivery platform and using bioorthogonal ligation chemistries to append photosensitisers and peptides of choice.
Project description:The epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM) is expressed by a wide range of human carcinomas, making it an attractive diagnostic and therapeutic target in oncology. Its recent identification on cancer stem cells has raised further interest in its use for tumor targeting and therapy. Here, we present the characterization and therapeutic potential of 3-17I, a novel human EpCAM-targeting monoclonal antibody. Strong reaction of 3-17I was observed in all lung, colon, and breast human tumor biopsies evaluated. By flow cytometry and confocal fluorescence microscopy, we demonstrate that 3-17I specifically targets EpCAM-positive cell lines. We also show evidence for mAb-sequestration in endo-/lysosomes, suggesting internalization of 3-17I by receptor-mediated endocytosis. The ribosomal-inactivating toxin saporin was linked to 3-17I, creating the per se non-toxic immunotoxin 3-17I-saporin, a promising candidate for the drug delivery technology photochemical internalization (PCI). PCI is based on a light-controlled destruction of endolysosomal membranes and subsequent cytosolic release of the sequestered payload upon light exposure. EpCAM-positive human cancer cell lines MCF7 (breast), BxPC-3 (pancreas), WiDr (colon), and the EpCAM-negative COLO320DM (colon), were treated with 3-17I-saporin in combination with the clinically relevant photosensitizer TPCS2a (Amphinex), followed by exposure to light. No cytotoxicity was observed after treatment with 3-17I-saporin without light exposure. However, cell viability, proliferation and colony-forming capacity was strongly reduced in a light-dependent manner after PCI of 3-17I. Our results show that 3-17I is an excellent candidate for diagnosis of EpCAM-positive tumors and for development of clinically relevant antibody-drug conjugates, using PCI for the treatment of localized tumors.
Project description:Plant Ribosome-inactivating proteins (RIPs) including the type I RIP Saporin have been used for the construction of Immunotoxins (ITxs) obtained via chemical conjugation of the toxic domain to whole antibodies or by generating genetic fusions to antibody fragments/targeting domains able to direct the chimeric toxin against a desired sub-population of cancer cells. The high enzymatic activity, stability and resistance to conjugation procedures and especially the possibility to express recombinant fusions in yeast, make Saporin a well-suited tool for anti-cancer therapy approaches. Previous clinical work on RIPs-based Immunotoxins (including Saporin) has shown that several critical issues must be taken into deeper consideration to fully exploit their therapeutic potential. This review focuses on possible combinatorial strategies (chemical and genetic) to augment Saporin-targeted toxin efficacy. Combinatorial approaches may facilitate RIP escape into the cytosolic compartment (where target ribosomes are), while genetic manipulations may minimize potential adverse effects such as vascular-leak syndrome or may identify T/B cell epitopes in order to decrease the immunogenicity following similar strategies as those used in the case of bacterial toxins such as Pseudomonas Exotoxin A or as for Type I RIP Bouganin. This review will further focus on strategies to improve recombinant production of Saporin-based chimeric toxins.
Project description:We previously developed an antibody-avidin fusion protein (ch128.1Av) that targets the human transferrin receptor 1 (TfR1) and exhibits direct cytotoxicity against malignant B cells in an iron-dependent manner. ch128.1Av is also a delivery system and its conjugation with biotinylated saporin (b-SO6), a plant ribosome-inactivating toxin, results in a dramatic iron-independent cytotoxicity, both in malignant cells that are sensitive or resistant to ch128.1Av alone, in which the toxin effectively inhibits protein synthesis and triggers caspase activation. We have now found that the ch128.1Av/b-SO6 complex induces a transcriptional response consistent with oxidative stress and DNA damage, a response that is not observed with ch128.1Av alone. Furthermore, we show that the antioxidant N-acetylcysteine partially blocks saporin-induced apoptosis suggesting that oxidative stress contributes to DNA damage and ultimately saporin-induced cell death. Interestingly, the toxin was detected in nuclear extracts by immunoblotting, suggesting the possibility that saporin might induce direct DNA damage. However, confocal microscopy did not show a clear and consistent pattern of intranuclear localization. Finally, using the long-term culture-initiating cell assay we found that ch128.1Av/b-SO6 is not toxic to normal human hematopoietic stem cells suggesting that this critical cell population would be preserved in therapeutic interventions using this immunotoxin.
Project description:Ribosome-inactivating proteins, including Saporin toxin, have found application in the search for innovative alternative cancer therapies to conventional chemo- and radiotherapy. Saporin's main mechanism of action involves the inhibition of cytoplasmic protein synthesis. Its strong theoretical efficacy is counterbalanced by negligible cell uptake and diffusion into the cytosol. In this work, we demonstrate that by immobilizing Saporin on iron oxide nanoparticles coated with an amphiphilic polymer, which promotes nanoconjugate endosomal escape, a strong cytotoxic effect mediated by ribosomal functional inactivation can be achieved. Cancer cell death was mediated by apoptosis dependent on nanoparticle concentration but independent of surface ligand density. The cytotoxic activity of Saporin-conjugated colloidal nanoparticles proved to be selective against three different cancer cell lines in comparison with healthy fibroblasts.