Research Papers:

Inhibition of insulin-like growth factor II (IGF-II)-dependent cell growth by multidentate pentamannosyl 6-phosphate-based ligands targeting the mannose 6-phosphate/IGF-II receptor

Megan E. Zavorka, Christopher M. Connelly, Rosslyn Grosely and Richard G. MacDonald _

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:62386-62410. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.11493

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Megan E. Zavorka1,*, Christopher M. Connelly1,*, Rosslyn Grosely1, Richard G. MacDonald1

1Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, Nebraska 68198, USA

*These authors have contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Richard G. MacDonald, email: [email protected]

Keywords: biochemistry, insulin-like growth factors, apoptosis, receptor

Received: April 28, 2016    Accepted: July 28, 2016    Published: August 22, 2016


The mannose 6-phosphate/insulin-like growth factor II receptor (M6P/IGF2R) binds M6P-capped ligands and IGF-II at different binding sites within the ectodomain and mediates ligand internalization and trafficking to the lysosome. Multivalent M6P-based ligands can cross-bridge the M6P/IGF2R, which increases the rate of receptor internalization, permitting IGF-II binding as a passenger ligand and subsequent trafficking to the lysosome, where the IGF-II is degraded. This unique feature of the receptor may be exploited to design novel therapeutic agents against IGF-II-dependent cancers that will lead to decreased bioavailable IGF-II within the tumor microenvironment. We have designed a panel of M6P-based ligands that bind to the M6P/IGF2R with high affinity in a bivalent manner and cause decreased cell viability. We present evidence that our ligands bind through the M6P-binding sites of the receptor and facilitate internalization and degradation of IGF-II from conditioned medium to mediate this cellular response. To our knowledge, this is the first panel of synthetic bivalent ligands for the M6P/IGF2R that can take advantage of the ligand-receptor interactions of the M6P/IGF2R to provide proof-of-principle evidence for the feasibility of novel chemotherapeutic agents that decrease IGF-II-dependent growth of cancer cells.

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