Lung Cancer remains the leading cause of cancer and mortality for men and women worldwide. In 2010, there were 222,520 new cases of lung cancer diagnosed in the US, 85% being non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and 157,300 lung cancer related deaths. Clearly, there is a need for additional and novel therapeutic options. The use of anti-EGF-R and anti v-EGF therapies has proven the potential of targeted therapies and monoclonal antibody approaches. The development of novel therapy against target critical and specific to the cancer cells but not to the normal tissues is expected to be efficacious and minimize damage to healthy cells. A&G Pharmaceutical Inc. is focused on identifying theranostic target for cancer in order to develop biological targeted therapy with companion diagnostics. These activities have led to the discovery of the 88 kDa granulin precursor (GP88), an autocrine growth factor preclinically validated as playing a role in NSCLC tumorigenesis. We have shown that: 1) GP88 is an autocrine growth/survival factor for NSCLC;2) increased GP88 expression in NSCLC positively correlates with increased tumorigenic properties of NSCLC;3) GP88 mediates tumor cell angiogenesis and invasiveness;4) NSCLC overexpressing GP88 are resistant to current therapies;5) increased GP88 expression in malignant tissue correlates with parameters of poor prognosis while normal tissue is negative;6) high expression of GP88 is associated with increased risk of recurrence in early stage NSCLC;7) lung cancer patients with poor prognosis have elevated GP88 serum levels;8) a neutralizing anti-human GP88 monoclonal antibody (AG1) has been developed in our laboratory and been validated previously in our breast cancer xenograft system. Preliminary results using NSCLC indicated that AG1 abrogates GP88 functional activity. The phase I SBIR application focuses on fully characterizing AG1 effect on NSCLC xenografts.
The specific aims are: 1) Determine the efficacy and potency of anti-human GP88 monoclonal antibody AG1 in mono-therapy for non small cell carcinoma in nude mice xenograft models. We will determine the optimal therapeutic dose of AG1 in xenograft models with H1299 and A549 cells widely used as NSCLC models;2) Determine the effect of AG1 antibody in combination therapy with chemotherapeutic agents (docetaxel, cisplatin and gemcitabine) that are used in the standard of care for NSCLC. Initially, optimal therapeutic dose for docetaxel, cisplatin and gemcitabine will be determined using A549 and NCI-H1299 xenografts in a monotherapy regimen. We will determine if AG1 combined with each chemotherapeutic drug will potentiate its effect. At the conclusion of this Phase I, we will have demonstrated whether GP88 is a candidate for NSCLC targeted therapy and established the optimal therapeutic effects of AG1 for NSCLC. If successful, such novel therapy will have the potential to improve treatment and increase the survival outcomes and quality of life of NSCLC patients.

Public Health Relevance

Lung Cancer remains the leading cause of cancer and mortality for both men and women worldwide. A&G Pharmaceutical Inc. has discovered a novel target that plays a critical role in tumor growth, survival and resistance to current therapies. The laboratory has developed agents that can block the action of this growth factor on tumor formation. The present application proposes feasibility studies to investigate if this agent can be inhibit lung cancer, particularly on small cell lung carcinoma. At the end of this phase I SBIR study, we will have established feasibility studies to develop novel therapies for lung cancer.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Small Business Innovation Research Grants (SBIR) - Phase I (R43)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-OTC-H (13))
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Kurtz, Andrew J
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A and G Pharmaceutical, Inc.
United States
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Edelman, Martin J; Feliciano, Josephine; Yue, Binbin et al. (2014) GP88 (progranulin): a novel tissue and circulating biomarker for non-small cell lung carcinoma. Hum Pathol 45:1893-9