The therapeutic efficacy of most anti-cancer drugs depends on their apoptosisinducing abilities. Previously, we showed that a peptide containing the mitochondrial targeting domain (MTD) found in Noxa, a BH-3 only protein of Bcl-2 family, induces necrosis. Here, a fusion peptide of neuropilin-1 (NRP-1) targeting peptide and MTD peptide, designated tumor homing motif 17:MTD (TU17:MTD), was found to induce necrosis in cancer cells in vitro and to cause the regression of tumors when intravenously injected into mice bearing subcutaneous CT26 colorectal carcinoma tumors. The necrosis within tumor tissues was evident upon administering TU17:MTD. TU17:MTD penetrated into tumor cells by targeting to Neuropilin-1, which could be blocked by anti-NRP-1 antibody. The efficacy of TU17:MTD on tumor regression was higher than that of TU17:D(KLAKLAK)2, a fusion peptide of NRP-1 targeting peptide and a pro-apoptotic peptide. The necrotic cell death within tumor tissues was evident at day 1 after administering TU17:MTD systemically. Transplanted subcutaneous substantially reduced in size within two weeks and 5 days, respectively, with no apparent side effects. Together, these results propose that the pro-necrotic peptide MTD may present an alternative approach for development of targeted anti-cancer agents.
- Mitochondrial targeting domain
- Pro-necrotic peptide
ASJC Scopus subject areas