Modified tumour antigen-encoding mRNA facilitates the analysis of naturally occurring and vaccine-induced CD4 and CD8 T cells in cancer patients
ABSTRACT The development of effective anti-cancer vaccines requires precise assessment of vaccine-induced immunity. This is often hampered by low ex vivo frequencies of antigen-specific T cells and limited defined epitopes. This study investigates the applicability of modified, in vitro-transcribed mRNA encoding a therapeutically relevant tumour antigen to analyse T cell responses in cancer patients. In this study transfection of antigen presenting cells, by mRNA encoding the tumour antigen NY-ESO-1, was optimised and applied to address spontaneous and vaccine-induced T cell responses in cancer patients. Memory CD8+ T cells from lung cancer patients having detectable humoral immune responses directed towards NY-ESO-1 could be efficiently detected in peripheral blood. Specific T cells utilised a range of different T cell receptors, indicating a polyclonal response. Specific killing of a panel of NY-ESO-1 expressing tumour cell lines indicates recognition restricted to several HLA allelic variants, including a novel HLA-B49 epitope. Using a modified mRNA construct targeting the translated antigen to the secretory pathway, detection of NY-ESO-1-specific CD4+ T cells in patients could be enhanced, which allowed the in-depth characterisation of established T cell clones. Moreover, broad CD8+ and CD4+ T cell responses covering multiple epitopes were detected following mRNA stimulation of patients treated with a recombinant vaccinia/fowlpox NY-ESO-1 vaccine. This approach allows for a precise monitoring of responses to tumour antigens in a setting that addresses the breadth and magnitude of antigen-specific T cell responses, and that is not limited to a particular combination of known epitopes and HLA-restrictions.
- SourceAvailable from: Ruben Niesvizky[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The type I melanoma antigen gene (MAGE) proteins CT7 (MAGE-C1) and MAGE-A3 are commonly expressed in multiple myeloma (MM), and their expression correlates with increased plasma cell proliferation and poor clinical outcome. They belong to the cancer-testis antigen (CTAg) group of tumor-associated proteins, some of which elicit spontaneous immune responses in cancer patients. CT7 and MAGE-A3 are promising antigenic targets for therapeutic tumor vaccines in myeloma; therefore, it is critical to determine if they are immunogenic in MM patients. We analyzed cellular and humoral immune responses against CTAgs in patients with plasma cell dyscrasias: MM, monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS), and Waldenström's macroglobulinemia (WM). Bone marrow lymphocytes from two of four untreated MM patients exhibited CT7-specific cellular immune responses as measured by an autologous cellular immunity assay, the first such immune response to CT7 to be reported in cancer patients. Sera from 24 patients were screened by ELISA for humoral immune responses to CTAgs. Two patients with MM demonstrated positive titers, one for MAGE-A1 and the other for SSX1. These data demonstrate that CTAgs, particularly CT7, are immunogenic in MM patients and merit further exploration as targets of immunological therapy in MM.Cancer immunity: a journal of the Academy of Cancer Immunology 01/2010; 10:4.
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ABSTRACT: The rigorous evaluation of cancer vaccination requires evidence of benefit to patients with cancer or those at risk of relapse from the disease. Clinical trials are expensive and require considerable human and clinical resources in order to demonstrate this benefit. In the era of defined cancer antigens, it is possible to evaluate immunogenic targets, and assess the quality and magnitude of immune responses against these antigens following vaccination. Analyzing these surrogate end points complements clinical assessment and provides a depth of understanding to better inform trial evaluation and design. We have used the immunogenic cancer testis antigen NY-ESO-1 as a model antigen. This article summarizes our experience in monitoring immunity against NY-ESO-1.Expert Review of Vaccines 06/2010; 9(6):617-29. DOI:10.1586/erv.10.58 · 4.21 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The ability of dendritic cells (DCs) to cross-present protein tumor antigens to cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) underpins the success of therapeutic cancer vaccines. We studied cross-presentation of the cancer/testis antigen, NY-ESO-1, and the melanoma differentiation antigen, Melan-A by human DC subsets. Monocyte-derived DCs (MoDCs) efficiently cross-presented human leukocyte associated (HLA)-A2-restricted epitopes from either a formulated NY-ESO-1/ISCOMATRIX vaccine or when either antigen was mixed with ISCOMATRIX adjuvant. HLA-A2 epitope generation required endosomal acidification and was proteasome-independent for NY-ESO-1 and proteasome-dependent for Melan-A. Both MoDCs and CD1c(+) blood DCs cross-presented NY-ESO-1-specific HLA-A2(157-165)-, HLA-B7(60-72)-, and HLA-Cw3(92-100)-restricted epitopes when formulated as an NY-ESO-1/ISCOMATRIX vaccine, but this was limited when NY-ESO-1 and ISCOMATRIX adjuvant were added separately to the DC cultures. Finally, cross-presentation of NY-ESO-1(157-165)/HLA-A2, NY-ESO-1(60-72)/HLA-B7, and NY-ESO-1(92-100)/HLA-Cw3 epitopes was proteasome-dependent when formulated as immune complexes (ICs) but only proteasome-dependent for NY-ESO-1(60-72)/HLA-B7-restricted cross-presentation facilitated by ISCOMATRIX adjuvant. We demonstrate, for the first time, proteasome-dependent and independent cross-presentation of HLA-A-, B-, and C-restricted epitopes within the same full-length tumor antigen by human DCs. Our findings identify important differences in the capacities of human DC subsets to cross-present clinically relevant, full-length tumor antigens and how vaccine formulation impacts CTL responses in vivo.Blood 07/2010; 116(2):218-25. DOI:10.1182/blood-2009-10-249458 · 10.45 Impact Factor