Cell based functional assays for IDO1 inhibitor screening and characterization
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Thomas Richards1 and Elena Brin1
1Polaris Pharmaceuticals, San Diego, CA, USA
Elena Brin, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Keywords: IDO1; cell-based assay; epacadostat; BMS-986205
Received: May 15, 2018 Accepted: June 19, 2018 Published: July 20, 2018
Indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase 1 (IDO1) is a new immune-oncology target and its inhibitors have shown promise in the clinic especially in combination with other immune-stimulating agents. Here we describe two robust cell-based assays for screening IDO1 inhibitors. Both assays can be easily adopted by most laboratories and utilized for screening of IDO1 inhibitors. Endogenous IDO1 expression is induced in a cancer cell line with interferon gamma and its activity is assessed by measuring kynurenine secreted into the media. The effect of cancer cell IDO1 induction and inhibition on T cell activation is evaluated in a co-culture assay using Jurkat T cell line. Additional readouts assessing cell viability are employed for early detection of false positive IDO1 inhibitors and toxic compounds. Clinical candidates epacadostat and BMS-986205 were evaluated in the assays as control compounds, the former can completely inhibit IDO1 activity while the maximum effect of the later is limited (to about 80% in our system) consistent with the differences in their interaction with IDO1. Nanomolar concentrations of both compounds rescued IDO1 mediated inhibition of T cell activation. However, treatment with micromolar concentrations of BMS-986205 blocked Jurkat T cell activation and after prolonged incubation induced cell death.
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