Medline ® Abstract for Reference 67
of 'Principles of cancer immunotherapy'
Costimulation through the CD137/4-1BB pathway protects human melanoma tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes from activation-induced cell death and enhances antitumor effector function.
Hernandez-Chacon JA, Li Y, Wu RC, Bernatchez C, Wang Y, Weber JS, Hwu P, Radvanyi LG
J Immunother. 2011 Apr;34(3):236-50.
Adoptive T-cell therapy (ACT) using expanded tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) with high-dose interleukin-2 is a promising form of immunotherapy for stage IV melanoma having clinical response rates of 50% or more. One of the major problems preventing further success of this therapy is that the current protocols used to highly expand TIL for infusion drive CD8(+) T cells to differentiate into effector cells losing key costimulatory molecules such as CD28 and CD27. This has been associated with a lack of persistence in vivo for reasons not entirely clear. In this study, we demonstrate that while human melanoma CD8(+) TIL lost CD27 and CD28 expression during the rapid expansion for ACT, they gained expression of the alternative costimulatory molecule CD137/4-1BB, and to a lesser extent CD134/OX40. Postrapid expansion protocol (REP) TIL were found to be highly sensitive to activation-induced cell death when reactivated through the T-cell receptor with low levels of OKT3 antibody. However, coligation of 4-1BB using 2 different agonistic anti-4-1BB antibodies potently prevented activation-induced cell death of post-REP CD8(+) TIL, including those specific for melanoma antigen recognized by T cells, and facilitated even further cell expansion. This was correlated with increased levels of bcl-2 and bcl-xL together with decreased bim expression. 4-1BB costimulated post-REP TIL also expressed increased levels of the cytolytic granule proteins and exhibited enhanced cytotoxic T-cell activity against melanoma cells. Lastly, post-REP CD8(+) TIL were protected from cell death by anti-4-1BB ligation when exposed to human leukocyte antigen-matched melanoma cells. Our results indicate that 4-1BB costimulation may significantly improve TIL survival during melanoma ACT and boost antitumor cytolytic activity.
Department of Melanoma Medical Oncology, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA.