S95021, a novel selective and pan-neutralizing anti interferon alpha (IFN-α) monoclonal antibody as a candidate treatment for selected autoimmune rheumatic diseases
Journal of Translational Autoimmunity | March 1, 2021
Duguet F, Ortega-Ferreira C, Fould B, Darville H, Berger S, Chomel A, Leclerc G, Kisand K, Haljasmägi L, Hayday AC, Desvaux E, Nony E, Moingeon P and De Ceuninck FJ
Transl Autoimmun. 2021;4:100093
Increased interferon-α (IFN-α) production is a critical component in the pathophysiology of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and other rheumatic autoimmune diseases. Herein, we report the characterization of S95021, a fully human IgG1 anti–IFN–α monoclonal antibody (mAb) as a novel therapeutic candidate for targeted patient populations. S95021 was expressed in CHOZN GS−/− cells, purified by chromatography and characterized by using electrophoresis, size exclusion chromatography and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. High purity S95021 was obtained as a monomeric entity comprising different charge variants mainly due to N-glycosylation. Surface plasmon resonance kinetics experiments showed strong association rates with all IFN-α subtypes and estimated KDs below picomolar values. Pan–IFN–α-binding properties were confirmed by immunoprecipitation assays and neutralization capacity with reporter HEK-Blue IFN-α/β cells. S95021 was IFN-α-selective and exhibited superior potency and broader neutralization profile when compared with the benchmark anti–IFN–α mAbs rontalizumab and sifalimumab. STAT-1 phosphorylation and the type I IFN gene signature induced in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells by recombinant IFN-α subtypes or plasmas from selected autoimmune patients were efficiently reduced by S95021 in a dose-dependent manner. Together, our results show that S95021 is a new potent, selective and pan IFN-α-neutralizing mAb. It is currently further evaluated as a valid therapeutic candidate in selected autoimmune diseases in which the IFN-α pro-inflammatory pathway is dysregulated.