Anticancer immunotherapy by MFAP5 blockade inhibits fibrosis and enhances chemosensitivity in ovarian and pancreatic cancer

Tsz Lun Yeung, Cecilia S. Leung, Kay Pong Yip, Jianting Sheng, Long Vien, Laura C. Bover, Michael J. Birrer, Stephen T.C. Wong, Samuel C. Mok

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Purpose: Recent studies demonstrate the role of the tumor microenvironment in tumor progression. However, strategies used to overcome the malignant phenotypes of cancer cells modulated by the microenvironment have not been thoroughly explored. In this study, we evaluated the therapeutic efficacy of a newly developed mAb targeting microfibrilassociated protein 5 (MFAP5), which is secreted predominately by cancer-associated fibroblast (CAF), in ovarian and pancreatic cancer models. Experimental Design: MAbs were developed using human MFAP5 recombinant protein as an antigen in mice, and antibodies from hybridoma clones were evaluated for their specificity to human and murine MFAP5. An Octet RED384 system was used to determine the kinetics of binding affinity and the specificity of the antibody clones, which were followed by epitope mapping and functional characterization by in vitro assays. The therapeutic efficacy of a lead anti-MFAP5 antibody clone 130A in tumor suppression was evaluated by ovarian tumor- and pancreatic tumor-bearing mouse models. Results: Three hybridoma clones, which produced antibodies with high affinity and specificity to MFAP5, were selected for functional studies. Antibody clone 130A, which recognizes a common epitope shared between human and murine MFAP5 protein, was further selected for in vivo studies. Results showed that clone 130A downregulated MFAP5-induced collagen production in CAFs, suppressed intratumoral microvessel leakiness, and enhanced paclitaxel bioavailability in both ovarian and pancreatic cancer mouse models. Conclusions: These data suggest that MFAP5 blockade using an immunologic approach inhibits fibrosis, induces tumor vessel normalization, and enhances chemosensitivity in ovarian and pancreatic cancer, and can be used as a novel therapeutic agent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6417-6428
Number of pages12
JournalClinical Cancer Research
Issue number21
StatePublished - Nov 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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