New EGFR inhibitor, 453, prevents renal fibrosis in angiotensin II-stimulated mice

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Chronic activation of renin-angiotensin system (RAS) greatly contributes to renal fibrosis through the over expression of angiotensin (Ang) II, ultimately leading to chronic kidney disease (CKD). As the main peptide in the RAS, Ang II is a key regulator of nephrotic inflammation, fibrogenic destruction and hypertensive nephropathy. Controlled by growth factors such as TGF-β, Ang II is thought to be affected by other such growth factors including epidermal growth factor (EGF) due to its ability to stimulate growth, regulate angiogenesis, and desensitize cells from apoptotic stimuli. Here we show that epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) plays a key role in Ang II induced renal fibrosis and its inhibition for the use as an effective treatment of CKD. 453, an AG1478 analog, was used to block the EGF-EGFR interaction in vivo in 4-week old mice treated with Ang II and 453. Along with the inhibition of EGFR and its downstream signaling pathways (AKT and ERK), 453 also prevented the activation of fibrotic (collagen, CFGF, TGF-β), inflammatory (COX2, IL-6, IL-1β, TNF-α), apoptosis and oxidative stress pathways. These findings suggest the use of 453 as a novel EGFR-inhibitor for therapeutic use in CKD kidney dysfunction.

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