Various glutamate urea ligands have displayed high affinities to prostate specific membrane antigen (PSMA), which is highly overexpressed in prostate and other cancer sites. The multivalent versions of small PSMA-targeted molecules are known to be even more efficiently bound to the receptor. Here, we employ a well-known urea-based ligand, 2-[3-(1,3-dicarboxypropyl)-ureido] pentanedioic acid (DUPA) and triazine dendrimers in order to study the effect of molecular size on multivalent targeting in prostate cancer. The synthetic route starts with the preparation of a dichlorotriazine bearing DUPA in 67% overall yield over five steps. This dichlorotriazine reacts with G1, G3, and G5 triazine dendrimers bearing a 1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-1,4,7,10-tetraacetic acid (DOTA) group for64Cu-labeling at the core to afford poly(monochlorotriazine) intermediates. Addition of 4-aminomethylpiperidine (4-AMP) and the following deprotection produce the target compounds, G1-(DUPA)4, G3-(DUPA)16, and G5-(DUPA)64. These targets include 4/16/64 DUPA groups on the surface and a DOTA group at the core, respectively. In vitro cell assay using PC3-PIP (PSMA positive) and PC3-FLU (PSMA negative) cells reveals that G1-(DUPA)4 has the highest PC3-PIP to PC3-FLU uptake ratio (10-fold) through the PSMA-mediated specific uptake. While G5-(DUPA)64 displayed approximately 12 times higher binding affinity (IC50 23.6 nM) to PC3-PIP cells than G1-(DUPA)4 (IC50 282.3 nM) as evaluated in a competitive binding assay, the G5 dendrimer also showed high non-specific binding to PC3-FLU cells. In vivo uptake of the64Cu-labeled dendrimers was also evaluated in severe combined inmmunodeficient (SCID) mice bearing PC3-PIP and PC3-FLU xenografts on each shoulder, respectively. Interestingly, quantitative imaging analysis of positron emission tomograph (PET) displayed the lowest tumor uptake in PC3-PIP cells for the midsize dendrimer G3-(DUPA)16 (19.4 kDa) (0.66 ± 0.15%ID/g at 1 h. p.i., 0.64 ± 0.11%ID/g at 4 h. p.i., and 0.67 ± 0.08%ID/g at 24 h. p.i.). Through the specific binding of G1-(DUPA)4 to PSMA, the smallest dendrimer (5.1 kDa) demonstrated the highest PC3-PIP to muscle and PC3-PIP to PC3-FLU uptake ratios (17.7 ± 5.5 and 6.7 ± 3.0 at 4 h p.i., respectively). In addition, the enhanced permeability and retention (EPR) effect appeared to be an overwhelming factor for tumor uptake of the largest dendrimer G5-(DUPA)64 as the uptake was at a similar level irrelevant to the PSMA expression.
- PET Imaging
- Prostate cancer
- Prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology