(1/297) Recombinant virus vaccination against "self" antigens using anchor-fixed immunogens.

To study the induction of anti-"self" CD8+ T-cell reactivity against the tumor antigen gp100, we used a mouse transgenic for a chimeric HLA-A*0201/H-2 Kb molecule (A2/Kb). We immunized the mice with a recombinant vaccinia virus encoding a form of gp100 that had been modified at position 210 (from a threonine to a methionine) to increase epitope binding to the restricting class I molecule. Immunogens containing the "anchor-fixed" modification elicited anti-self CD8+ T cells specific for the wild-type gp100(209-217) peptide pulsed onto target cells. More important, these cells specifically recognized the naturally presented epitope on the surface of an A2/Kb-expressing murine melanoma, B16. These data indicate that anchor-fixing epitopes could enhance the function of recombinant virus-based immunogens.  (+info)

(2/297) Induction of antitumor immunity with dendritic cells transduced with adenovirus vector-encoding endogenous tumor-associated antigens.

Dendritic cells (DCs) are professional Ag-presenting cells that are being considered as potential immunotherapeutic agents to promote host immune responses against tumor Ags. In this study, recombinant adenovirus (Ad) vectors encoding melanoma-associated Ags were used to transduce murine DCs, which were then tested for their ability to activate CTL and induce protective immunity against B16 melanoma tumor cells. Immunization of C57BL/6 mice with DCs transduced with Ad vector encoding the hugp100 melanoma Ag (Ad2/hugp100) elicited the development of gp100-specific CTLs capable of lysing syngeneic fibroblasts transduced with Ad2/hugp100, as well as B16 cells expressing endogenous murine gp100. The induction of gp100-specific CTLs was associated with long term protection against lethal s.c. challenge with B16 cells. It was also possible to induce effective immunity against a murine melanoma self Ag, tyrosinase-related protein-2, using DCs transduced with Ad vector encoding the Ag. The level of antitumor protection achieved was dependent on the dose of DCs and required CD4+ T cell activity. Importantly, immunization with Ad vector-transduced DCs was not impaired in mice that had been preimmunized against Ad to mimic the immune status of the general human population. Finally, DC-based immunization also afforded partial protection against established B16 tumor cells, and the inhibition of tumor growth was improved by simultaneous immunization against two melanoma-associated Ags as opposed to either one alone. Taken together, these results support the concept of cancer immunotherapy using DCs transduced with Ad vectors encoding tumor-associated Ags.  (+info)

(3/297) Impact of cytokine administration on the generation of antitumor reactivity in patients with metastatic melanoma receiving a peptide vaccine.

Patients with metastatic melanoma were immunized with an immunodominant peptide derived from the gp100 melanoma-melanocyte differentiation Ag that was modified to increase binding to HLA-A+0201. A total of 10 of 11 patients who received the g209-2M peptide alone developed precursors reactive with the native g209 peptide, compared with only 5 of 16 patients who received g209-2M peptide plus IL-2 (p2 = 0.005). Peptide reactivity closely correlated with the recognition of HLA-A+0201 melanoma cells (p < 0. 001). The decrease in immune reactivity when peptide was administered with IL-2 appeared specific for the immunizing peptide, since reactivity to an influenza peptide resulting from prior exposure was not affected. Preexisting antitumor precursors did not decrease when peptide plus IL-2 was administered. The administration of GM-CSF or IL-12 also resulted in a decrease in circulating precursors compared with the administration of peptide alone, though not as great a decrease as that seen with IL-2. Immunization with peptide plus IL-2 did, however, appear to have clinical impact since 6 of the 16 patients (38%) that received peptide plus IL-2 had objective cancer regressions. It thus appeared possible that immunization with peptide plus IL-2 resulted in sequestering or apoptotic destruction of newly activated immune cells at the tumor site. These represent the first detailed studies of the impact of immunization with tumor peptides in conjunction with a variety of cytokines in patients with metastatic cancer.  (+info)

(4/297) Protective immunization against melanoma by gp100 DNA-HVJ-liposome vaccine.

DNA-based vaccine immunization effectively induces both humoral and cell-mediated immunity to antigens and can confer protection against numerous infectious diseases as well as some cancers. Human and mouse melanomas consistently express the tumor-associated antigen interacted with the melanogenesis pathway. Gp100 is immunogenic and has been shown to induce both antibody and cytotoxic T cell (CTL) responses in humans. To explore the potential use of DNA immunization to induce melanoma-specific immune responses, we assessed HVJ-AVE liposome incorporated with plasmid DNA encoding human gp100. The gp100 DNA vaccine was used in a mouse melanoma model to assess immunity against the B16 melanoma of C57BL/6 mice. Intramuscular injection of the DNA-HVJ-AVE liposomes induced both anti-gp100 antibody and CTL responses. Gp100 DNA-HVJ-AVE liposome immunization significantly delayed tumor development in mice challenged with B16 melanoma cells. Mice immunized with gp100 DNA-HVJ-AVE liposomes survived longer compared with control mice immunized with HVJ-AVE liposome alone. These results indicate that immunization with human gp100 DNA by HVJ-AVE liposomes can induce protective immunity against melanoma in this pre-clinical mouse model. This strategy may provide an effective approach for vaccine therapy with tumor-associated antigens against human melanoma.  (+info)

(5/297) Increased vaccine-specific T cell frequency after peptide-based vaccination correlates with increased susceptibility to in vitro stimulation but does not lead to tumor regression.

Although in vitro sensitization assays have shown increased melanoma Ag (MA)-specific CTL reactivity after vaccination with MA peptides, clinical responses have been uncommon. This paradox questions whether data obtained from the in vitro stimulation and expansion of T cells lead to an overestimation of the immune response to vaccines. Using HLA/peptide tetramer (tHLA), we enumerated MA-specific T cell precursor frequency (TCPF) directly in PBMC from 23 melanoma patients vaccinated with gp100:209-217(210M) (g209-2M) peptide. Vaccine-specific TCPF was higher in postvaccination PBMC from seven of seven patients treated with peptide alone and four of five patients treated with peptide plus IL-12 (range of postvaccination TCPF, 0.2-2.4% and 0.2-2.5%, respectively). The increased TCPF correlated with enhanced susceptibility to in vitro stimulation with the relevant epitope. Paradoxically, no increase in postvaccination TCPF was observed in most patients who had been concomitantly treated with IL-2 (1 of 11 patients; range of postvaccination TCPF, 0.02-1.0%), a combination associated with enhanced rates of tumor regression. The lack of increase in TCPF seen in these patients corresponded to inability to elicit expansion of vaccine-specific T cells in culture. This study shows that a peptide-based vaccine can effectively generate a quantifiable T cell-specific immune response in the PBMC of cancer patients, though such a response does not associate with a clinically evident regression of metastatic melanoma.  (+info)

(6/297) Expansion of tumor-T cell pairs from fine needle aspirates of melanoma metastases.

Lymphocytes expanded from excised specimens can be used to characterize intratumoral T cell responses. These analyses, however, are limited to one time point in the natural history of the removed tumor. The expansion of autologous tumor cells and tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) from fine needle aspirates (FNA) of tumors potentially allows a dynamic evaluation of T cell responses within the same lesion at moments relevant to the disease course or response to therapy. Fourteen TIL cultures and 8 tumor cell lines were generated from 18 FNA (12 patients). Five of six TIL that could be tested against autologous tumor demonstrated specific reactivity. Two additional TIL for which no autologous tumor was available demonstrated recognition of HLA-matched melanoma cell lines. Serial FNA of the same lesions were performed in five HLA-A*0201 patients vaccinated with the emulsified melanoma Ag (MA) epitopes: MART-1:27-35; tyrosinase:368-376(370D); gp100:280-288(288V); and gp100:209-217 (210M). FNA material was separately cultured for a short time in IL-2 (300 IU/ml) after stimulation with irradiated autologous PBMC pulsed with each peptide or FluM1:58-66 (1 micromol/ml). No peptide-specific TIL could be expanded from prevaccination FNA. However, after vaccination, TIL specific for gp100:280(g280), gp100:209 (g209), and MART-1:27-35 (MART-1)-related epitopes were identified in three, three, and two patients, respectively. No Flu reactivity could be elicited in TIL, whereas it was consistently present in parallel PBMC cultures. This excluded PBMC contamination of the FNA material. This analysis suggests the feasibility of TIL expansion from minimal FNA material and localization of vaccine-specific T cells at the tumor site.  (+info)

(7/297) The density of peptides displayed by dendritic cells affects immune responses to human tyrosinase and gp100 in HLA-A2 transgenic mice.

Several HLA-A*0201-restricted peptide epitopes that can be used as targets for active immunotherapy have been identified within melanocyte differentiation proteins. However, uncertainty exists as to the most effective way to elicit CD8+ T cells with these epitopes in vivo. We report the use of transgenic mice expressing a derivative of HLA-A*0201, and dendritic cells, to enhance the activation of CD8+ T cells that recognize peptide epitopes derived from human tyrosinase and glycoprotein 100. We find that by altering the cell surface density of the immunizing peptide on the dendritic cells, either by pulsing with higher concentrations of peptide, or by changing the MHC-peptide-binding affinity by generating variants of the parent peptides, the size of the activated CD8+ T cell populations can be modulated in vivo. Significantly, the density of peptide that produced the largest response was less than the maximum density achievable through short-term peptide pulsing. We have also found, however, that while some variant peptides are effective at eliciting both primary and recall CD8+ T cell responses that can recognize the parental epitope, other variant epitopes lead to the outgrowth of CD8+ T cells that only recognize the variant. HLA-A*0201 transgenic mice provide an important model to define which peptide variants are most likely to stimulate CD8+ T cell populations that recognize the parental, melanoma-specific peptide.  (+info)

(8/297) Evaluation of the modified ELISPOT assay for gamma interferon production in cancer patients receiving antitumor vaccines.

Frequencies of vaccine-responsive T-lymphocyte precursors in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) prior to and after administration of peptide-based vaccines in patients with cancer can be measured by limiting-dilution assays (LDA) or by ELISPOT assays. We have used a modified version of the ELISPOT assay to monitor changes in the frequency of gamma interferon (IFN-gamma)-producing T cells in a population of lymphocytes responding to a relevant peptide or a nonspecific stimulator, such as phorbol myristate acetate-ionomycin. Prior to its use for monitoring of patient samples, the assay was validated and found to be comparable to the LDA performed in parallel, using tumor-reactive cytolytic T-lymphocyte (CTL) lines. The sensitivity of the ELISPOT assay was found to be 1/100,000 cells, with an interassay coefficient of variation of 15%, indicating that it could be reliably used for monitoring of changes in the frequency of IFN-gamma-secreting responder cells in noncultured or cultured lymphocyte populations. To establish that the assay is able to detect the T-cell precursor cells responsive to the vaccine, we used CD8(+) T-cell populations positively selected from PBMC of HLA-A2(+) patients with metastatic melanoma, who were treated with dendritic cell-based vaccines containing gp100, MELAN-A/MART-1, tyrosinase, and influenza virus matrix peptides. The frequency of peptide-specific responder T cells ranged from 0 to 1/2,600 before vaccination and increased by at least 1 log unit after vaccination in two patients, one of whom had a clinical response to the vaccine. However, no increases in the frequency of peptide-responsive T cells were observed in noncultured PBMC or PBMC cultured in the presence of the relevant peptides after the melanoma patients enrolled in another trial were treated with the intramuscular peptide vaccine plus MF59 adjuvant. Thus, while the ELISPOT assay was found to be readily applicable to assessments of frequencies of CTL precursors of established CTL lines and ex vivo-amplified PBMC, its usefulness for monitoring of fresh PBMC in patients with cancer was limited. In many of these patients antitumor effector T cells are present at frequencies of lower than 1/100,000 in the peripheral circulation. Serial monitoring of such patients may require prior ex vivo amplification of specific precursor cells.  (+info)