An HGF-MSP chimera disassociates the trophic properties of scatter factors from their pro-invasive activity
Michieli, P × Cavassa, S Basilico, C De Luca, A Mazzone, Massimiliano Asti, C Chiusaroli, R Guglielmi, M Bossu, P Colotta, F Caselli, G Comoglio, PM #
Nature america inc
Nature biotechnology vol:20 issue:5 pages:488-495
Hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) and macrophage-stimulating protein (MSP) have an intrinsic dual nature: they are trophic cytokines preventing apoptosis on one side and scatter factors promoting invasion on the other. For therapeutic use, their anti-apoptotic activity must be separated from their pro-invasive activity. To this end, we engineered chimeric factors containing selected functional domains of HGF and/or MSP in different combinations, and tested their biological activity. Here we present a chimeric cytokine derived from the chains of HGF and MSP, named Metron factor 1 for its ability to concomitantly activate the HGF receptor (Met) and the MSP receptor (Ron). We provide evidence that Metron factor 1 prevents apoptosis and stimulates cell proliferation at nanomolar concentrations, but is devoid of any pro-invasive activity. In an in vivo murine model of drug-induced nephrotoxicity, intravenous injection of recombinant Metron factor 1 prevented renal damage and preserved tubular integrity.