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  • An engineered ligand trap inhibits leukemia inhibitory factor as pancreatic cancer treatment strategy. Communications biology Hunter, S. A., McIntosh, B. J., Shi, Y., Sperberg, R. A., Funatogawa, C., Labanieh, L., Soon, E., Wastyk, H. C., Mehta, N., Carter, C., Hunter, T., Cochran, J. R. 2021; 4 (1): 452


    Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF), a cytokine secreted by stromal myofibroblasts and tumor cells, has recently been highlighted to promote tumor progression in pancreatic and other cancers through KRAS-driven cell signaling. We engineered a high affinity soluble humanLIF receptor (LIFR) decoy that sequesters humanLIF and inhibits its signaling as a therapeutic strategy. This engineered 'ligand trap', fused to an antibody Fc-domain, has ~50-fold increased affinity (~20 pM) and improved LIF inhibition compared to wild-type LIFR-Fc, potently blocks LIF-mediated effects in pancreatic cancer cells, and slows the growth of pancreatic cancer xenograft tumors. These results, and the lack of apparent toxicity observed in animal models, further highlights ligand traps as a promising therapeutic strategy for cancer treatment.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/s42003-021-01928-2

    View details for PubMedID 33846527