c-MET and its ligand hepatocyte growth factor are often dysregulated in human cancers. Dynamic changes in c-MET expression occur and might predict drug efficacy or emergence of resistance. Noninvasive visualization of c-MET dynamics could therefore potentially guide c-MET-directed therapies. We investigated the feasibility of 89Zr-labelled one-armed c-MET antibody onartuzumab PET for detecting relevant changes in c-MET levels induced by c-MET-mediated epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitor erlotinib resistance or heat shock protein-90 (HSP90) inhibitor NVP-AUY-922 treatment in human non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) xenografts.Methods
In vitro membrane c-MET levels were determined by flow cytometry. HCC827ErlRes, an erlotinib-resistant clone with c-MET upregulation, was generated from the exon-19 EGFR-mutant human NSCLC cell line HCC827. Mice bearing HCC827 and HCC827ErlRes tumours in opposite flanks underwent 89Zr-onartuzumab PET scans. The HCC827-xenografted mice underwent 89Zr-onartuzumab PET scans before treatment and while receiving biweekly intraperitoneal injections of 100 mg/kg NVP-AUY-922 or vehicle. Ex vivo, tumour c-MET immunohistochemistry was correlated with the imaging results.Results
In vitro, membrane c-MET was upregulated in HCC827ErlRes tumours by 213 ± 44% in relation to the level in HCC827 tumours, while c-MET was downregulated by 69 ± 9% in HCC827 tumours following treatment with NVP-AUY-922. In vivo, 89Zr-onartuzumab uptake was 26% higher (P < 0.05) in erlotinib-resistant HCC827ErlRes than in HCC827 xenografts, while HCC827 tumour uptake was 33% lower (P < 0.001) following NVP-AUY-922 treatment.Conclusion
The results show that 89Zr-onartuzumab PET effectively discriminates relevant changes in c-MET levels and could potentially be used clinically to monitor c-MET status.
This article is freely available, click here to access the full text/PDF