Direct Evidence of Target Inhibition with Anti-VEGF, EGFR, and mTOR Therapies in a Clinical Model of Wound Healing.
PURPOSE: In early clinical testing, most novel targeted anticancer therapies have limited toxicities and limited efficacy, which complicates dose and schedule selection for these agents. Confirmation of target inhibition is critical for rational drug development; however, repeated tumor biopsies are often impractical and peripheral blood mononuclear cells and normal skin are often inadequate surrogates for tumor tissue. Based upon the similarities of tumor and wound stroma, we have developed a clinical dermal granulation tissue model to evaluate novel targeted therapies. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: A 4-mm skin punch biopsy was used to stimulate wound healing and a repeat 5-mm punch biopsy was used to harvest the resulting granulation tissue. This assay was performed at pretreatment and on-treatment evaluating four targeted therapies, bevacizumab, everolimus, erlotinib, and panitumumab, in the context of three different clinical trials. Total and phosphorylated levels VEGFR2, S6RP, and EGFR were evaluated using ELISA-based methodologies. RESULTS: Significant and consistent inhibition of the VEGF pathway (using VEGFR2 as the readout) was observed in granulation tissue biopsies from patients treated with bevacizumab and everolimus. In addition, significant and consistent inhibition of the mTOR pathway (using S6RP as the readout) was observed in patients treated with everolimus. Finally, significant inhibition of the EGFR pathway (using EGFR as the readout) was observed in patients treated with panitumumab, but this was not observed in patients treated with erlotinib. CONCLUSIONS: Molecular analyses of dermal granulation tissue can be used as a convenient and quantitative pharmacodynamic biomarker platform for multiple classes of targeted therapies.
Jia, J; Dellinger, AE; Weiss, ES; Bulusu, A; Rushing, C; Li, H; Howard, LA; Kaplan, N; Pang, H; Hurwitz, HI; Nixon, AB
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