National Research Council of Canada. Human Health Therapeutics
In an effort to rationalize and optimize an antiapoptotic coating combining chondroitin sulfate (CS) and epidermal growth factor (EGF) for vascular applications, the authors here report the comparison of two grafting strategies aiming to display EGF in an oriented fashion on CS. For that purpose, the authors produced, purified, and characterized a chimeric protein corresponding to EGF that was N-terminally fused to a cysteine and a coil peptide. The chimera was covalently immobilized via its free thiol group or captured via coiled–coil interactions at the surface of a biosensor or on a chondroitin sulfate coating in multiwell plates, mimicking the coating that was previously developed by them for stent-graft surfaces. The interactions of grafted EGF with the soluble domain of its receptor or the impact of grafted EGF upon vascular smooth muscle survival in proapoptotic conditions indicated that the coiled–coil based tethering was the best approach to display EGF. These results, combined to direct enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay measurements, indicated that the coiled–coil tethering approach allowed increasing the amount of bioavailable EGF when compared to covalent coupling, rather than the total amount of grafted EGF, while using much lower concentrations of tagged EGF during incubation.