Misonidazole was covalently conjugated (3–68 mol drug/mol antibody) to 19-9 monoclonal antibody directed against a colorectal carcinoma tumor-associated antigen as a method for targeting radiosensitizing agents. This attachment was accomplished by the mixed anhydride method using the hemisuccinate derivative of misonidazole. Evaluation of conjugates in vitro shows a loss of antibody binding activity with increasing loading levels; however, significant binding activity is retained even at relatively high sensitizer/antibody ratios. This observation was consistent in three binding assays: a competitive radioimmunoassay; an enzyme immunoassay; and an affinity column assay. From these studies, it was concluded that the optimal loading factor for misonidazole-antibody conjugates, when it is used for immunochemotherapy lies between 8 and 15. In vitro release studies indicated that conjugates are hydrolytically stable (t½ = 4 days) under physiological conditions.

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This work was supported by grants from NIH (CA 31245), North-East Tier Ben Franklin Partnership of the State of Pennsylvania, the W. W. Smith Charitable Trust, and the Milheim Foundation for Cancer Research.

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