A critical limitation of Salmonella typhimurium (S. typhimurium) as an anti-cancer agent is the loss of their invasive or replicative activities, which results in no or less delivery of anti-cancer agents inside cancer cells in cancer therapy. Here we developed an oxytolerant attenuated Salmonella strain (KST0650) from the parental KST0649 (ΔptsIΔcrr) strain using radiation mutation technology (RMT). The oxytolerant KST0650 strain possessed 20-times higher replication activity in CT26 cancer cells and was less virulent than KST0649. Furthermore, KST0650 migrated effectively into tumor tissues in mice. KST0650 was further equipped with a plasmid harboring a spliced form of the intracellular pro-apoptotic protein sATF6, and the expression of sATF6 was controlled by the radiation-inducible recN promoter. The new strain was named as KST0652, in which sATF6 protein expression was induced in response to radiation in a dose-dependent manner. This strain was effectively delivered inside cancer cells and tumor tissues via the Salmonella type III secretion system (T3SS). In addition, combination treatment with KST0652 and radiation showed a synergistic anti-tumor effect in murine tumor model with complete inhibition of tumor growth and protection against death. In conclusion, we showed that RMT can be used to effectively develop an anti-tumor Salmonella strain for delivering anti-cancer agents inside tumors.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the Nuclear R & D program of Ministry of Science and ICT (S.L.), and grants from the National Research Foundation of Korea (grant numbers NRF-2017M2A2A6A02020925, 2018K2A206023828 to H.S.S. and 2015R1D1A1A01059338, 2018R1D1A1B07048399 to J.H.L.).
© 2020, The Author(s).