Endogenous anti-HER2 antibodies suppress HER2 phosphorylation and signaling through extracellular signal-regulated kinase

Original Articles
Cancer Research 65(2): 650-6, 2005
Montgomery R., Makary E, Schiffman K, Goodell V, and Disis ML
Description / Abstract: 

Immunologic targeting of the oncoprotein HER2/neu with monoclonal antibodies is an important component of current therapeutic strategies for patients with locally and systemically advanced breast cancer. Engineered antibodies targeting HER2 may have agonist or antagonist effects on HER2, but little is known about whether endogenous antibodies modulate HER2 activity. Vaccination of patients with HER2 peptides successfully induced antibodies in a minority of patients with HER2-expressing malignancy. A subset of antibodies specifically suppressed phosphorylation of HER2 on tyrosine Y1248, a residue critical for HER2 signaling through extracellular signal-regulated kinase. These antibodies also suppressed extracellular signal-regulated kinase phosphorylation and inhibited colony formation in soft agar. The majority of the antibodies that suppressed HER2 phosphorylation displayed specificity for amino acids 328 to 345 and 369 to 384. The isotype of anti-HER2 antibodies was predominantly IgG3 of low avidity, suggesting a Th1 response to peptide vaccine. Endogenous anti-HER2 antibodies can effectively suppress HER2 kinase activity and downstream signaling to inhibit the transformed phenotype of HER2-expressing tumor cells.

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