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Screening and Identification of Peptides Specifically Targeted to Gastric Cancer Cells from a Phage Display Peptide Library

Deniz Sahin, Sevket Onur Taflan, Gizem Yartas, Hassan Ashktorab, Duane T Smoot
Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention: APJCP 2018 April 25, 19 (4): 927-932
Background: Gastric cancer is the second most common cancer among the malign cancer types. Inefficiency of traditional techniques both in diagnosis and therapy of the disease makes the development of alternative and novel techniques indispensable. As an alternative to traditional methods, tumor specific targeting small peptides can be used to increase the efficiency of the treatment and reduce the side effects related to traditional techniques. The aim of this study is screening and identification of individual peptides specifically targeted to human gastric cancer cells using a phage-displayed peptide library and designing specific peptide sequences by using experimentally-eluted peptide sequences. Methods: Here, MKN-45 human gastric cancer cells and HFE-145 human normal gastric epithelial cells were used as the target and control cells, respectively. 5 rounds of biopannning with a phage display 12-peptide library were applied following subtraction biopanning with HFE-145 control cells. The selected phage clones were established by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and immunofluorescence detection. We first obtain random phage clones after five biopanning rounds, determine the binding levels of each individual clone. Then, we analyze the frequencies of each amino acid in best binding clones to determine positively overexpressed amino acids for designing novel peptide sequences. Results: DE532 (VETSQYFRGTLS) phage clone was screened positive, showing specific binding on MKN-45 gastric cancer cells. DE-Obs (HNDLFPSWYHNY) peptide, which was designed by using amino acid frequencies of experimentally selected peptides in the 5th round of biopanning, showed specific binding in MKN-45 cells. Conclusion: Selection and characterization of individual clones may give us specifically binding peptides, but more importantly, data extracted from eluted phage clones may be used to design theoretical peptides with better binding properties than even experimentally selected ones. Both peptides, experimental and designed, may be potential candidates to be developed as useful diagnostic or therapeutic ligand molecules in gastric cancer research.


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