2020 Volume 33 Issue 2 Pages 67-76
Desmoglein-3 (DSG3) is a potential target of cytotoxic antibody therapy for squamous cell carcinomas but is also expressed in various normal squamous epithelia. We obtained information about DSG3 distribution in mouse tissues by immunohistochemistry and conducted an intravenous multiple-dose study in mouse to estimate the toxic potential of anti-DSG3 therapy. DSG3 was expressed in the squamous epithelium of several organs including the skin, esophagus, tongue, forestomach, eye, and vagina. It was expressed at all estrous cycles of the vagina with changes in distribution patterns along with the structural changes in each cycle, and expression was reduced in ovariectomized (OVX) mice. On the administration of the antibody, there was disarrangement of the vaginal mucosal epithelium with formation of miroabscess, increased granulocyte infiltration, and single cell necrosis. Despite similar expression levels of DSG3 in other tissues, histopathological changes were limited to the vagina. The severity of the changes was reduced by ovariectomy. From these findings, the lesions were thought to be related to the drastic change in the histological structure of the vaginal mucosa accompanying the estrous cycle. Thus, we have shown that the changing expression of target antigen distribution and its relationship with physiological changes in tissue structure are important features for estimating the toxic potential of cytotoxic antibody therapy.