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Targeting of a platinum-bound sunitinib analog to renal proximal tubular cells

Authors Dolman, Harmsen, Pieters, Sparidans, Lacombe, Szokol, Orfi, Keri, Storm G, Hennink, Kok R

Received 23 September 2011

Accepted for publication 15 December 2011

Published 31 January 2012 Volume 2012:7 Pages 417—433


Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

ME (Emmy) M Dolman1, Stefan Harmsen1, Ebel HE Pieters1, Rolf W Sparidans2, Marie Lacombe3, Bálint Szokol4, László Orfi4, György Kéri4, Gert Storm1, Wim E Hennink1, Robbert J Kok1
1Department of Pharmaceutics, Utrecht Institute for Pharmaceutical Sciences, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands; 2Faculty of Science, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Clinical Pharmacology, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands; 3Kreatech Biotechnology BV, Amsterdam, The Netherlands; 4Vichem Chemie Ltd, Budapest, Hungary

Background: Activated proximal tubular cells play an important role in renal fibrosis. We investigated whether sunitinib and a kidney-targeted conjugate of sunitinib were capable of attenuating fibrogenic events in tubulointerstitial fibrosis.
Methods: A kidney-targeted conjugate was prepared by linkage of a sunitinib analog (named 17864) via a platinum-based linker to the kidney-specific carrier lysozyme. Pharmacological activity of 17864-lysozyme was evaluated in human kidney proximal tubular cells (HK-2); the capability of the kidney-directed conjugate to accumulate in the kidneys was studied in mice. Potential antifibrotic effects of a single-dose treatment were evaluated in the unilateral ureteral obstruction (UUO) model in mice.
Results: The 17864-lysozyme conjugate and its metabolites strongly inhibited tyrosine kinase activity. Upon intravenous injection, 17864-lysozyme rapidly accumulated in the kidneys and provided sustained renal drug levels for up to 3 days after a single dose. Renal drug level area under the curve was increased 28-fold versus an equimolar dose of sunitinib malate. Daily treatment of UUO mice with a high dose of sunitinib malate (50 mg/kg) resulted in antifibrotic responses, but also induced drug-related toxicity. A single dose of 17864-lysozyme (equivalent to 1.8 mg/kg sunitinib) was safe but showed no antifibrotic effects.
Conclusion: Multikinase inhibitors like sunitinib can be of benefit in the treatment of fibrotic diseases, provided that their safety can be improved by strategies as presented in this paper, and sustained renal levels can be achieved.

Keywords: drug delivery, sunitinib, fibrosis, platinum linker

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