A TCR-mimic antibody to WT1 bypasses tyrosine kinase inhibitor resistance in human BCR-ABL+ leukemias Academic Article uri icon


  • Acute and chronic leukemias, including CD34(+) CML cells, demonstrate increased expression of the Wilms tumor gene 1 product (WT1), making WT1 an attractive therapeutic target. However, WT1 is a currently undruggable, intracellular protein. ESKM is a human IgG1 T-cell receptor mimic monoclonal antibody directed to a 9-amino acid sequence of WT1 in the context of cell surface HLA-A*02. ESKM was therapeutically effective, alone and in combination with tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs), against Philadelphia chromosome-positive acute leukemia in murine models, including a leukemia with the most common, pan-TKI, gatekeeper resistance mutation, T315I. ESKM was superior to the first-generation TKI, imatinib. Combination therapy with ESKM and TKIs was superior to either drug alone, capable of curing mice. ESKM showed no toxicity to human HLA-A*02:01(+) stem cells under the conditions of this murine model. These features of ESKM make it a promising nontoxic therapeutic agent for sensitive and resistant Ph(+) leukemias.


  • Dubrovsky, L
  • Pankov, D
  • Brea, EJ
  • Dao, T
  • Scott, A
  • Yan, S
  • O'Reilly, RJ
  • Liu, C
  • Scheinberg, DA

publication date

  • 2014

published in