Pretargeted PET Imaging with a TCO-Conjugated Anti-CD44v6 Chimeric mAb U36 and [89Zr]Zr-DFO-PEG5-Tz

Dave Lumen, Danielle Vugts, Marion Chomet, Surachet Imlimthan, Mirkka Sarparanta, Ricardo Vos, Maxime Schreurs, Mariska Verlaan, Pauline A. Lang, Eero Hippeläinen, Wissam Beaino, Albert D. Windhorst, Anu J. Airaksinen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

The recent advances in the production of engineered antibodies have facilitated the development and application of tailored, target-specific antibodies. Positron emission tomography (PET) of these antibody-based drug candidates can help to better understand their in vivo behavior. In this study, we report an in vivo proof-of-concept pretargeted immuno-PET study where we compare a pretargeting vs targeted approach using a new 89Zr-labeled tetrazine as a bio-orthogonal ligand in an inverse electron demand Diels-Alder (IEDDA) in vivo click reaction. A CD44v6-selective chimeric monoclonal U36 was selected as the targeting antibody because it has potential in immuno-PET imaging of head-and-neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Zirconium-89 (t1/2 = 78.41 h) was selected as the radionuclide of choice to be able to make a head-to-head comparison of the pretargeted and targeted approaches. [89Zr]Zr-DFO-PEG5-Tz ([89Zr]Zr-3) was synthesized and used in pretargeted PET imaging of HNSCC xenografts (VU-SCC-OE) at 24 and 48 h after administration of a trans-cyclooctene (TCO)-functionalized U36. The pretargeted approach resulted in lower absolute tumor uptake than the targeted approach (1.5 ± 0.2 vs 17.1 ± 3.0% ID/g at 72 h p.i. U36) but with comparable tumor-to-non-target tissue ratios and significantly lower absorbed doses. In conclusion, anti-CD44v6 monoclonal antibody U36 was successfully used for 89Zr-immuno-PET imaging of HNSCC xenograft tumors using both a targeted and pretargeted approach. The results not only support the utility of the pretargeted approach in immuno-PET imaging but also demonstrate the challenges in achieving optimal in vivo IEDDA reaction efficiencies in relation to antibody pharmacokinetics.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBioconjugate chemistry
Early online date2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2022

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