Gene therapy for pancreatic cancer targeting the genomic alterations of tumor suppressor genes using replication-selective oncolytic adenovirus

Makoto Sunamura, Masaru Oonuma, Fuyuhiko Motoi, Hisashi Abe, Yukoh Saitoh, Toru Hoshida, Shigeru Ottomo, Akira Horii, Seiki Matsuno

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


In order to develop an effective therapeutic intervention for patients with pancreatic cancer, we examined the genetic alternations of pancreatic cancer. Based on these results, we are developing a new gene therapy targeting the genetic character of pancreatic cancer using mutant adenoviruses selectively replication-competent in tumor cells. Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) of 30% or more were observed on chromosome arms 17p (47%), 9p (45%), 18q (43%), 12q (34%), and 6q (30%). LOH of 12q, 17p, and 18q showed the significant association with poor prognosis. These data strongly suggest that mutation of the putative suppressor genes, TP53 and SMAD4 play significant roles in the disease progression. Based on this rationale, we are developing a new gene therapy targeting tumors without normal TP53 function. E1B-55kDa-deleted adenovirus (AxE1AdB) can selectively replicate in TP53-deficient human tumor cells but not cells with functional TP53. We evaluated the therapeutic effect of this AxE1AdB on pancreatic cancer without normal TP53 function. The growth of human pancreatic tumor in SCID mice model was markedly inhibited by the consecutive injection of AxE1AdB. Furthermore, AxE1AdB is not only the strong weapon but also useful carrier of genes possessing anti-tumor activities as a virus vector specific to tumors without normal TP53 function. It was reported that uracil phosphoribosyl transferase (UPRT) overcomes 5FU resistance. UPRT catalyzes the synthesis of 5-fluorouridine monophosphate (FUMP) from Uracil and phosphoribosylpyrophosphate (PRPP). The antitumor effect of 5FU is enhanced by augmenting 5-fluorodeoxyuridine monophosphate (FdUMP) converted from FUMP, which inhibits Thymidylate Synthetase (TS). The therapeutic advantage of restricted replication competent adenovirus that expresses UPRT (AxE1AdB-UPRT) was evaluatedin an intra-peritoneal disseminated tumor model. To study the anti-tumor effect of AxE1AdB-UPRT/5FU, mice with disseminated AsPC-1 tumors were administered the adenovirus, followed by the 5FU treatment. It was shown that the treatment with AxE1AdB-UPRT/5FU caused a dramatic reduction of the disseminated tumor burden without toxicity in normal tissues. These results revealed thatthe AxE1AdB-UPRT/5FU system is a promising tool for intraperitoneal disseminated pancreatic cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-150
Number of pages13
JournalHuman cell : official journal of Human Cell Research Society
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2002 Sep

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Cancer Research


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