Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-dependent signaling contributes to the pathophysiology of asthma. However, these findings have not been translated into a clinical application. We recently generated ferritin H-chain protein (FTH1)-based nanoparticles with an anti-EGFR single-chain Fv (anti-EGFR scFv) on the surface of FTH1, namely, anti-EGFR scFv-FTH1/FTH1 nanoparticles. In the present study, we found that these nanoparticles could specifically bind to EGFR-expressing cells, leading to downregulation of EGFR and mucin 5AC (MUC5AC) protein expression and growth suppression of House Dust Mite (HDM)-stimulated human bronchial epithelial 16HBE and lipopolysaccharides (LPS)-activated murine macrophage-like RAW264.7 cells. In vivo, intraperitoneal administration of anti-EGFR scFv-FTH1/FTH1 nanoparticles, but not FTH1 nanoparticles, alleviated the major pathological symptoms including airway hyperresponsiveness, airway inflammation, goblet cell hyperplasia, mucus hyperproduction, and increased release of Th2 cytokines in an allergen ovalbumin (OVA)-induced asthma mouse model. Importantly, during the dosing period these nanoparticles were safe for both heathy and asthmatic mice, and more effective in controlling airway inflammation than cetuximab, an EGFR monoclonal antibody. Altogether, our studies provide insights into the control of airway inflammation for treatment of asthma by targeting EGFR. The similar strategy can be used to fabricate scFv-based recombinant protein nanoparticles for other clinical applications.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biomedical Engineering
- Biochemistry, medical