We have evaluated whether i.p. murine ovarian tumors could be treated with an IL-2 plasmid DNA complexed with the cationic lipid, (+/-)-N-(2-hydroxyethyl)-N,N-dimethyl-2, 3-bis(tetradecyloxy)-1-propanaminium bromide/dioleoylphosphatidylethanolamine (DMRIE/DOPE). Reporter gene studies were initially conducted in which mice bearing i.p. murine ovarian teratocarcinoma (MOT) were injected i.p. with reporter gene plasmid DNA (pDNA):DMRIE/DOPE. Histochemical analyses revealed that transfection occurred primarily in the tumor cells of the ascites, with only a minority of other ascitic cells or surrounding tissues transfected. IL-2 levels in the MOT ascites were determined after i. p. injection of either IL-2 pDNA:DMRIE/DOPE or recombinant IL-2 protein. IL-2 was detected in tumor ascites for up to 10 days after a single i.p. injection of IL-2 pDNA:DMRIE/DOPE, but was undetectable 24 h after a single i.p. injection of IL-2 protein. In an antitumor efficacy study, MOT tumor-bearing mice injected i.p. with IL-2 pDNA:DMRIE/DOPE on days 5, 8, and 11 after tumor cell implant had a significant inhibition of tumor ascites (p = 0.001) as well as a significant increase in survival (p = 0.008). A cytokine profile of the MOT tumor ascites revealed that mice treated with IL-2 pDNA:DMRIE/DOPE had an IL-2-specific increase in the levels of IFN-gamma and GM-CSF. Taken together, these findings indicate that i. p. treatment of ovarian tumors with IL-2 pDNA:DMRIE/DOPE can lead to an increase in local IL-2 levels, a change in the cytokine profile of the tumor ascites, and a significant antitumor effect.
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View details for PubMedID 10586027