Lung cancer chemoprevention with the prostacyclin analogue iloprost is the most promising approach to date for intercepting progression of premalignant lung lesions in former smokers. Previous preclinical studies of iloprost used oral delivery, but a study modeling delivery directly to the target organ was needed. In vivo and in vitro studies have identified gene expression changes following iloprost treatment, including increased e-cadherin and Ppargγ and decreased COX2 and vimentin. We used tumor counts and gene expression to demonstrate the effectiveness of intranasal delivery of iloprost in a murine model of premalignant adenomas. Intranasal delivery of iloprost reduced adenoma multiplicity 14 weeks after urethane exposure in FVB/N mice compared with untreated urethane controls. Intranasal iloprost reversed urethane-induced gene expression changes in tumors and whole lung. These results correspond to previous studies of oral iloprost and in vitro treatment of human bronchial epithelial cells. This study demonstrates that intranasal delivery of iloprost in a mouse model of lung premalignant lesions is effective chemoprevention. This will be an essential tool for exploring mechanisms and outcomes of iloprost chemoprevention, along with supporting ongoing clinical trials of inhaled iloprost chemoprevention.
Iloprost is a promising chemoprevention agent for lung cancer and this work describes a new delivery approach in vivo.