Objective-To determine expression of folate receptors (FRs) and folate uptake in multicentric lymphomas in dogs. Sample-10 dogs with histopathologically confirmed multicentric lymphoma and 20 archival lymph node biopsy specimens from dogs with multicentric lymphoma. Procedures-Multicentric lymphomas in 10 dogs were prospectively evaluated for FR expression by use of immunohistochemical analysis and for in vivo folate uptake by use of nuclear scintigraphy. Dogs with FR-expressing tumors were eligible for FR-targeted chemotherapy. Twenty archival lymphoma biopsy specimens were also evaluated with immunohistochemical analysis. Results-FRs were not detected with immunohistochemical analysis in lymph node samples obtained from the 10 dogs or in archival biopsy specimens. However, nuclear scintigraphy revealed uptake of radioactive tracer in 6 of 10 dogs. Five of these 6 dogs were treated with an FR-targeted chemotherapeutic agent; results of treatment were complete remission in 1 dog, stable disease in 2 dogs, and progressive disease in 2 dogs. Treatment-related toxicoses generally were mild. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance-This study provided strong evidence for folate uptake in a substantial portion of multicentric lymphomas of dogs and indicated the antitumor activity of FR-targeted chemotherapeutics for these cancers. Use of FR-targeted chemotherapeutics may be promising for the treatment of FR-expressing multicentric lymphomas in dogs. Further studies are needed to determine reasons for lack of immunoreactivity to currently identified anti-FR antibodies and to develop improved methods for detecting FRs in lymphomas of dogs.
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