May 2, 2020

Poly(2-oxazoline) nanoparticle delivery enhances the therapeutic potential of vismodegib for medulloblastoma by improving CNS pharmacokinetics and reducing systemic toxicity

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
D. HwangMarina Sokolsky-Papkov


We report a novel, nanoparticle formulation of the SHH pathway inhibitor vismodegib that improves efficacy for medulloblastoma treatment while reducing toxicity. Systemic therapies for brain tumors are complicated by restricted blood-brain barrier (BBB) permeability and dose-limiting extraneural toxicity, therefore improved delivery approached are needed. Here we show how a nanoparticle delivery system addresses these obstacles, bringing new efficacy to previously ineffective therapy. Vismodegib has been a promising agent for patients with SHH-subgroup medulloblastoma and is FDA-approved for basal cell carcinoma. However, vismodegib has limited benefit for patients with SHH-driven medulloblastoma, due to off-target toxicities and the development of resistance during therapy. We encapsulated vismodegib in polyoxazoline block copolymer micelles (POx-vismo). We then evaluated POx-vismo using transgenic mice engineered to develop endogenous medulloblastomas, testing the novel agent in a preclinical model with native vasculature and tumor microenvironment. POx-vismo showed improved CNS pharmacokinetics and reduced systemic and bone toxicity. Mechanistic studies show that POx nanoparticles did not enter the CNS, but rather acted with...Continue Reading

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