- Cytokine modulation in patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis undergoing treatment with steroids, immunosuppressants, and IFN-γ 1b. [Journal Article]
- JBJ Biol Regul Homeost Agents 2017 Jan-Mar; 31(1):59-69
- Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a chronic lung disease of unknown etiology and pathogenic mechanisms. From an etiopathogenic point of view, alveolar macrophages play a key role in accumulation...
Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a chronic lung disease of unknown etiology and pathogenic mechanisms. From an etiopathogenic point of view, alveolar macrophages play a key role in accumulation of fibroblasts and deposition of collagen and extracellular matrix by releasing specific cytokines and inflammatory mediators. IPF seems to be also associated with circulating fibrocytes, which might be involved with an abnormal pulmonary vascular repair and remodeling. Based on its hypothesized pathologic mechanisms, anti-inflammatory, anti-fibrotic and immunosuppressive therapies are often used. For these reasons, Interferon-g (IFN-g) has been used to exploit its activity on macrophages and fibroblasts. The aim of this study was to investigate the response to corticosteroids and/or IFN-g 1b treatments based on pulmonary function tests and on inflammatory cytokine patterns of expression on bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL), at baseline and during and after the therapies. Unlike previous studies, we analyzed a period of therapy longer than 1 year. Our results demonstrated the effectiveness of IFN-γ in a group of IPF patients in whom the treatment was prolonged for over a year. These data suggest a positive role of IFN-γ; treatment in patients in the initial stage of the disease.
- Review of the recombinant human interferon gamma as an immunotherapeutic: Impacts of production platforms and glycosylation. [Review]
- JBJ Biotechnol 2016 Dec 20; 240:48-60
- Human interferon gamma is a cytokine belonging to a diverse group of interferons which have a crucial immunological function against mycobacteria and a wide variety of viral infections. To date, it h...
Human interferon gamma is a cytokine belonging to a diverse group of interferons which have a crucial immunological function against mycobacteria and a wide variety of viral infections. To date, it has been approved for treatment of chronic granulomatous disease and malignant osteopetrosis, and its application as an immunotherapeutic agent against cancer is an increasing prospect. Recombinant human interferon gamma, as a lucrative biopharmaceutical, has been engineered in different expression systems including prokaryotic, protozoan, fungal (yeasts), plant, insect and mammalian cells. Human interferon gamma is commonly expressed in Escherichia coli, marketed as ACTIMMUNE(®), however, the resulting product of the prokaryotic expression system is unglycosylated with a short half-life in the bloodstream; the purification process is tedious and makes the product costlier. Other expression systems also did not show satisfactory results in terms of yields, the biological activity of the protein or economic viability. Thus, the review aims to synthesise available information from previous studies on the production of human interferon gamma and its glycosylation patterns in different expression systems, to provide direction to future research in this field.
- Drug Treatment of Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis: Systematic Review and Network Meta-Analysis. [Review]
- ChestChest 2016; 149(3):756-66
- CONCLUSIONS: Although two treatments have been approved for IPF on the basis of reduced decline in pulmonary function, neither one has a clear advantage on mortality outcomes.
- IFN-γ for Friedreich ataxia: present evidence. [Journal Article]
- NDNeurodegener Dis Manag 2015; 5(6):497-504
- IFN-γ-1b is currently US FDA approved as an orphan drug for the treatment of chronic granulomatous disease and severe malignant osteopetrosis. It is administered via subcutaneous injection and is a p...
IFN-γ-1b is currently US FDA approved as an orphan drug for the treatment of chronic granulomatous disease and severe malignant osteopetrosis. It is administered via subcutaneous injection and is a potential therapy for Friedreich ataxia (FRDA), a rare degenerative neurological condition. Ongoing Phase II and III trials in both adults and children with FRDA were preceded by a small Phase I, open-label trial in children that showed that IFN-γ-1b was reasonably well-tolerated and improved overall neurological function as measured by the Friedreich Ataxia Rating Scale after 12 weeks of treatment, though the primary outcome measure of frataxin level showed no improvement. Although there is an established dose of IFN-γ-1b prescribed for the current indications, the efficacy and tolerability of these dose levels in the FRDA population remains the subject of ongoing investigation.
- GIFT-1, a phase IIa clinical trial to test the safety and efficacy of IFNγ administration in FRDA patients. [Clinical Trial, Phase II]
- NSNeurol Sci 2016; 37(3):361-4
- Friedreich's ataxia is an autosomal recessive progressive degenerative disorder caused by deficiency of the protein frataxin. The most common genetic cause is a homozygotic expansion of GAA triplets ...
Friedreich's ataxia is an autosomal recessive progressive degenerative disorder caused by deficiency of the protein frataxin. The most common genetic cause is a homozygotic expansion of GAA triplets within intron 1 of the frataxin gene leading to impaired transcription. Preclinical in vivo and in vitro studies have shown that interferon gamma (IFNγ) is able to up-regulate the expression of frataxin gene in multiple cell types. We designed a phase IIa clinical trial, the first in Italy, aimed at assessing both safety and tolerability of IFNγ in Friedreich's patients and ability to increase frataxin levels in peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Nine patients (6 female and 3 males aged 21-38 years) with genetically confirmed disease were given 3 subcutaneous escalating doses (100, 150 and 200 μg) of IFNγ (human recombinant interferon 1 b gamma, trade name IMUKIN(®)), over 4 weeks. The primary end-point was the assessment of the safety and tolerability of IFNγ by means of standard clinical and hematological criteria. The secondary end-point was the detection of changes of frataxin levels in peripheral blood mononuclear cells after each single escalating dose of the drug. IFNγ was generally well tolerated, the main adverse event was hyperthermia/fever. Although, increases in frataxin levels could be detected in a minority of patients, these changes were not significant. A large phase III multicenter, randomized clinical trial with IFNγ in Friedreich's ataxia patients is currently ongoing. This study is expected to conclusively address the clinical efficacy of IFNγ therapy in patients with Friedreich's ataxia.
- Pulmonary Fibrosis Treated with Inhaled Interferon-gamma (IFN-γ). [Case Reports]
- JAJ Aerosol Med Pulm Drug Deliv 2015; 28(5):406-10
- Parenteral IFN-γ was unsuccessful as a treatment for pulmonary fibrosis. Inhaled IFN-γ targeted to the lungs may be more effective. Our patient, a 56-year-old male with biopsy proven usual interstiti...
Parenteral IFN-γ was unsuccessful as a treatment for pulmonary fibrosis. Inhaled IFN-γ targeted to the lungs may be more effective. Our patient, a 56-year-old male with biopsy proven usual interstitial pneumonia (UIP) and declining pulmonary function tests (PFTs) was initially diagnosed with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). He enrolled in a 2-year research protocol and was treated with inhaled IFN-γ (100 μg, Actimmune, Horizon Pharma, Deerfield, IL) 3 times per week. After completion of the protocol, he was able to secure the drug and continued therapy for a total of 7 years. He felt better, returning to work. His only complaint was transient cough during inhalation. PFTs improved (e.g., DLCO, 58% at baseline, 81% at 2 years, 69% currently). Clinical monitoring showed preserved exercise tolerance and stable CT scans. He was ultimately diagnosed (year 5) with scleroderma-like connective tissue disease after he developed sclerodactyly and a positive antinuclear antibody. Inhaled IFN-γ was well tolerated for 7 years and may stabilize fibrotic lung disease.
- Inhaled Interferon and Diffusion Capacity in Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF). [Randomized Controlled Trial]
- SVSarcoidosis Vasc Diffuse Lung Dis 2015; 32(1):37-42
- CONCLUSIONS: DLCO was significantly improved following inhaled (IFN-γ) as treatment for IPF. Our data suggest that previous studies utilizing parenteral IFN-γ may have failed because of the mode of delivery. Future randomized, controlled, phase 3 trials, comparing the difference in PFT behavior (specifically DLCO) longitudinally may be more sensitive to drug effect and serve as a valuable clinical endpoint.
- Interferon Gamma, but not Calcitriol Improves the Osteopetrotic Phenotypes in ADO2 Mice. [Journal Article]
- JBJ Bone Miner Res 2015; 30(11):2005-13
- ADO2 is a heritable osteosclerotic disorder that usually results from heterozygous missense dominant negative mutations in the chloride channel 7 gene (CLCN7). ADO2 is characterized by a wide range o...
ADO2 is a heritable osteosclerotic disorder that usually results from heterozygous missense dominant negative mutations in the chloride channel 7 gene (CLCN7). ADO2 is characterized by a wide range of features and severity, including multiple fractures, impaired vision due to secondary bony overgrowth and/or the lack of the optical canal enlargement with growth, and osteonecrosis/osteomyelitis. The disease is presently incurable, although anecdotal evidence suggests that calcitriol and interferon gamma-1b (IFN-G) may have some beneficial effects. To identify the role of these drugs for the treatment of ADO2, we utilized a knock-in (G213R mutation in Clcn7) ADO2 mouse model that resembles the human disease. Six-week-old ADO2 heterozygous mice were administered vehicle (PBS) or calcitriol or IFN-G 5 times per week for 8 weeks. We determined bone phenotypes using DXA and μCT, and analyzed serum biochemistry and bone resorption markers. ADO2 mice treated with all doses of IFN-G significantly (p<0.05) attenuated the increase of whole body aBMD and distal femur BV/TV gain in both male and female compared to the vehicle group. In contrast, mice treated with low and medium doses of calcitriol showed a trend of higher aBMD and BV/TV whereas high dose calcitriol significantly (p<0.05) increased bone mass compared to the vehicle group. The calcium and phosphorus levels did not differ between vehicle and IFN-G or calcitriol treated mice; however, we detected significantly (p<0.05) elevated levels of CTX/TRAP5b ratio in IFN-G treated mice. Our findings indicate that while IFN-G at all doses substantially improved the osteopetrotic phenotypes in ADO2 heterozygous mice, calcitriol treatment at any dose did not improve the phenotype and at high dose further increased bone mass. Thus, use of high dose calcitriol therapy in ADO2 patients merits serious reconsideration. Importantly, our data support the prospect of a clinical trial of IFN-G in ADO2 patients.
- Optimal PEGylation can improve the exposure of interferon in the lungs following pulmonary administration. [Journal Article]
- JPJ Pharm Sci 2015; 104(4):1421-30
- The utility of inhaled protein therapeutics to treat lung-resident diseases is limited by protein degradation in the lungs and rapid clearance. This study therefore aimed to evaluate the impact of PE...
The utility of inhaled protein therapeutics to treat lung-resident diseases is limited by protein degradation in the lungs and rapid clearance. This study therefore aimed to evaluate the impact of PEGylation on the lung and systemic exposure of interferon (IFN) α2 after intratracheal administration to rats. An inverse correlation was observed between PEG chain length and systemic exposure, where bioavailability was 5.5% for the 31 kDa PEGylated construct and <0.4% for the 60 kDa PEGylated construct when compared with 15% for native IFN (19 kDa). Retention of PEGylated IFNα within the lungs increased 2.5-fold to threefold when compared with native IFN. When comparing the lung and systemic exposure of PEGylated and native IFN in terms of protein biological activity, the 31 kDa PEGylated construct increased exposure by 50% and 100%, respectively, when compared with native IFN, but the 60 kDa PEG construct offered no benefit. Preliminary work also indicated that the conjugation of IFNγ with 10 kDa PEG significantly increases the retention of the protein within the lung. Optimal PEGylation may therefore be used as a means to improve the exposure of lung-resident diseases to therapeutic cytokines and potentially reduce systemic exposure and side effects as well as dosing frequency.
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- Unified baseline and longitudinal mortality prediction in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. [Randomized Controlled Trial]
- EREur Respir J 2015; 45(5):1374-81
- The Gender-Age-Physiology (GAP) model is a validated, baseline-risk prediction model for mortality in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Longitudinal variables have been shown to contribute to risk predi...
The Gender-Age-Physiology (GAP) model is a validated, baseline-risk prediction model for mortality in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Longitudinal variables have been shown to contribute to risk prediction in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and may improve the predictive performance of the baseline GAP model. Our aims were to further validate the GAP model and evaluate whether the addition of longitudinal variables improves its predictive performance. The study population was derived from a large clinical trials cohort of patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (n=1109). Model performance was determined by improvement in the C-statistic, net reclassification improvement, clinical net reclassification improvement, and a goodness-of-fit test. The GAP model had good discriminative performance with a C-statistic of 0.757 (95% CI 0.750-0.764). However, the original GAP model tended to overestimate risk in this cohort. A novel, easy to use model, consisting of the original GAP predictors plus history of respiratory hospitalisation and 24-week change in forced vital capacity (the longitudinal GAP model) improved model performance with a C-statistic of 0.785 (95% CI 0.780-0.790), net reclassification improvement of 8.5%, clinical net reclassification improvement of 25%, and a goodness-of-fit test of 0.929. The Longitudinal GAP model, along with the original GAP model, may unify baseline and longitudinal mortality risk prediction in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.