Novel peptide probes to assess the tensional state of fibronectin fibers in cancer

Simon Arnoldini, Alessandra Moscaroli, Mamta Chabria, Manuel Hilbert, Samuel Hertig, Roger Schibli, Martin Béhé, Viola Vogel
Transformations of extracellular matrix (ECM) accompany pathological tissue changes, yet how cell-ECM crosstalk drives these processes remains unknown as adequate tools to probe forces or mechanical strains in tissues are lacking. Here, we introduce a new nanoprobe to assess the mechanical strain of fibronectin (Fn) fibers in tissue, based on the bacterial Fn-binding peptide FnBPA5. FnBPA5 exhibits nM binding affinity to relaxed, but not stretched Fn fibers and is shown to exhibit
more » ... ve ECM binding in cell culture in a comparison with an established Fn-FRET probe. Staining of tumor tissue cryosections shows large regions of relaxed Fn fibers and injection of radiolabeled 111 In-FnBPA5 in a prostate cancer mouse model reveals specific accumulation of 111 In-FnBPA5 in tumor with prolonged retention compared to other organs. The herein presented approach enables to investigate how Fn fiber strain at the tissue level impacts cell signaling and pathological progression in different diseases.
doi:10.3929/ethz-b-000213976 fatcat:evjwb7tpsnak3mj4pt6pugh6xu