Using atomic force microscopy and computer simulations, researchers from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and the UC Davis Cancer Center have unveiled a new and reliable technique to characterize the binding interaction of multivalent molecules designed for targeted drug delivery in cancer treatment.
The Livermore team used atomic force microscopy (AFM) to measure the binding forces between several single-chain antibody fragments and Mucin1 peptide. Mucin1 is commonly found in large quantities in a variety of epithelial cells in the human body, and one of its specific forms is a characteristic marker for prostate, breast, colon, lung, gastric and pancreatic cancers. Binding between Mucin1 and anti-bodies recognizing the marker is critical to targeted drug delivery for cancer patients.
"We found a very good way of quantifying the drug binding affinity, which determines the drug's efficiency," said Aleksandr Noy, a researcher in LLNL's Chemical Biology and Nuclear Sciences Division (CBDN), who along with CBDN postdoctoral student Todd Sulchek is the lead author of the paper that appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences online edition for the week of Oct. 31-Nov. 4. "Not only does this technique aid doctors in delivering targeted drugs in cancer treatment, but it also may benefit the Laboratory's efforts evaluating antibodies and designing better binding molecules for biosensors that play such a critical role in national security."
Noy said the technique could be applied to other types of cancer including colon, lung, gastric and pancreatic.
The UC Davis collaborators are one of the leading groups in the radioimmunotherapeutics
development field. The group has had promising outcomes from testing this new generation of enh
Contact: Anne Stark
DOE/Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory