Targeted therapy based on protein-drug conjugates has attracted significant attention owing to its high efficacy and low side effects. However, efficient and stable drug conjugation to a protein binder remains a challenge. Herein, a chemoenzymatic method to generate highly stable and homogenous drug conjugates with high efficiency is presented. The approach comprises the insertion of the CaaX sequence at the C-terminal end of the protein binder, prenylation using farnesyltransferase, and drug conjugation through an oxime ligation reaction. MMAF and an EGFR-specific repebody are used as the antitumor agent and protein binder, respectively. The method enables the precisely controlled synthesis of repebody-drug conjugates with high yield and homogeneity. The utility of this approach is illustrated by the notable stability of the repebody-drug conjugates in human plasma, negligible off-target effects, and a remarkable antitumor activity in vivo. The present method can be widely used for generating highly homogeneous and stable PDCs for targeted therapy.
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