Published on Tue Oct 22 2019

Targeting Lysyl oxidase-like 2 in Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis

Espindola, M. S., Habiel, D. M., Coelho, A. L., Mikels-Vigdal, A., Hogaboam, C. M.

The composition of extracellular matrix (ECM) is altered during pathologic scarring in damaged organs including the lung. One major change in the ECM involves the cross-linking of collagen, which promotes fibroblast to myofibroblast differentiation.nnObjectiveWe examined the role of lysyl oxidase (LOX)-like 2 in lung fibroblasts cultured from normal or IPF lung samples and in a humanized mouse model of IPF using a monoclonal antibody (Simtuzumab).nnResearch Design and MethodsPrimary lung fibroblasts from normal donor lungs and IPF lung explants were examined for expression of LOXL2. Targeting LOXL2 with Simtuzumab on normal and IPF fibroblasts was examined both in vitro and in vivo for synthetic, functional, and profibrotic properties.nnResultsLOXL2 was increased at transcript and protein level in IPF compared with normal lung samples. In a dose-dependent manner, Simtuzumab enhanced differentiation of fibroblasts into myofibroblasts. Inhibition of LOXL2 also enhanced fibroblast invasion and accelerated the outgrowth of fibroblasts from dissociated human lung cell preparations. Finally, preventative or delayed delivery of Simtuzumab enhanced lung fibrosis in a humanized mouse model of pulmonary fibrosis.nnConclusionConsistent with its failure in a Phase 2 clinical trial, Simtuzumab exhibited no therapeutic efficacy in translational in vitro and in vivo assays.