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Combination of the glutaminyl cyclase inhibitor PQ912 (Varoglutamstat) and the murine monoclonal antibody PBD-C06 (m6) shows additive effects on brain Aβ pathology in transgenic mice

: Hoffmann, Torsten; Rahfeld, Jens-Ulrich; Schenk, Mathias; Ponath, Falk; Makioka, Koki; Hutter-Paier, Birgit; Lues, Inge; Lemere, Cynthia A.; Schilling, Stephan

Volltext ()

International journal of molecular sciences 22 (2021), Nr.21, Art. 11791, 13 S.
ISSN: 1422-0067
ISSN: 1661-6596
Zeitschriftenaufsatz, Elektronische Publikation
Fraunhofer IZI ()
glutaminyl cyclase inhibitor; Anti-pyroglutamyl β-amyloid antibody; drug combination; Alzheimer's disease; Immuntherapie; Transgenic mice

Compelling evidence suggests that pyroglutamate-modified Aβ (pGlu3-Aβ; AβN3pG) peptides play a pivotal role in the development and progression of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Approaches targeting pGlu3-Aβ by glutaminyl cyclase (QC) inhibition (Varoglutamstat) or monoclonal antibodies (Donanemab) are currently in clinical development. Here, we aimed at an assessment of combination therapy of Varoglutamstat (PQ912) and a pGlu3-Aβ-specific antibody (m6) in transgenic mice. Whereas the single treatments at subtherapeutic doses show moderate (16-41%) but statistically insignificant reduction of Aβ42 and pGlu-Aβ42 in mice brain, the combination of both treatments resulted in significant reductions of Aβ by 45-65%. Evaluation of these data using the Bliss independence model revealed a combination index of ≈1, which is indicative for an additive effect of the compounds. The data are interpreted in terms of different pathways, in which the two drugs act. While PQ912 prevents the formation of pGlu3-Aβ in different compartments, the antibody is able to clear existing pGlu3-Aβ deposits. The results suggest that combination of the small molecule Varoglutamstat and a pE3Aβ-directed monoclonal antibody may allow a reduction of the individual compound doses while maintaining the therapeutic effect.