Immune therapy for cancer.
ABSTRACT Over the past decade, immune therapy has become a standard treatment for a variety of cancers. Monoclonal antibodies, immune adjuvants, and vaccines against oncogenic viruses are now well-established cancer therapies. Immune modulation is a principal element of supportive care for many high-dose chemotherapy regimens. In addition, immune activation is now appreciated as central to the therapeutic mechanism of bone marrow transplantation for hematologic malignancies. Advances in our understanding of the molecular interactions between tumors and the immune system have led to many novel investigational therapies and continue to inform efforts for devising more potent therapeutics. Novel approaches to immune-based cancer treatment strive to augment antitumor immune responses by expanding tumor-reactive T cells, providing exogenous immune-activating stimuli, and antagonizing regulatory pathways that induce immune tolerance. The future of immune therapy for cancer is likely to combine many of these approaches to generate more effective treatments.
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ABSTRACT: TNF-alpha-related-apoptosis-inducing-ligand (TRAIL) has been explored as a therapeutic drug to kill cancer cells. Cancer cells in the circulation are subjected to apoptosis-inducing factors. Despite the presence of these factors, cells are able to extravasate and metastasize. The homotypic and heterotypic cell-cell interactions in a tumor are known to play a crucial role in bestowing important characteristics to cancer cells that leave the primary site. Spheroid cell culture has been extensively used to mimic these physiologically relevant interactions. In this work, we show that the breast cancer cell lines BT20 and MCF7, cultured as 3D tumor spheroids, are more resistant to TRAIL-mediated apoptosis by downregulating the expression of death receptors (DR4 and DR5) that initiate TRAIL-mediated apoptosis. For comparison, we also investigated the effect of TRAIL on cells cultured as a 2D monolayer. Our results indicate that tumor spheroids are enriched for CD44hiCD24loALDH1hi cells, a phenotype that is predominantly known to be a marker for breast cancer stem cells. Furthermore, we attribute the TRAIL-resistance and cancer stem cell phenotype observed in tumor spheroids to the upregulation of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2)/prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) pathway. We show that inhibition of the COX-2/PGE2 pathway by treating tumor spheroids with NS-398, a selective COX-2 inhibitor, reverses the TRAIL-resistance and decreases the incidence of a CD44hiCD24lo population. Additionally, we show that siRNA mediated knockdown of COX-2 expression in MCF7 cells render them sensitive to TRAIL by increasing the expression of DR4 and DR5. Collectively, our results show the effect of the third-dimension on the response of breast cancer cells to TRAIL and suggest a therapeutic target to overcome TRAIL-resistance.PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(10):e111487. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: THE MOLECULAR CHARACTERISTICS OF THE TUMOUR AND THE PROGNOSIS OF COLORECTAL CARCINOMA (ABSTRACT): Due to the high rate of incidence and the overall mortality, colorectal cancer is one of the most important medical problems modern medicine has to deal with. A lot of research has been done in order to understand the molecular basis of the carcinogenesis process in colorectal adenocarcinoma and now the evolution of the colorectal cancer from normal epithelial cell to cancer cell is one of the best understood models of carcinogenesis. In order to fully understand this process one must have basic knowledge of the histology and the genetics of colorectal adenocarcinoma. Also of great importance is the role that the immune system has to play in the development and progression or regression of this type of cancer – from the basic immune response to the presence of the neoplastic cells, to the immune response that is caused by central necrosis which can lead to stimulation of tumour growth and finally to the immune response that is responsible for the development of cancer in the presence of chronic inflammation. The reason why the biology of the colorectal cancer is so important is that it can not only lead to finding new ways of treatment but mostly because it can lead to a better staging system than the classical Dukes staging system, which in turn can correct under-treatment or over-treatment of colorectal cancer lesions.
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ABSTRACT: The efficacy of immune surveillance and antigen-specific cancer immunotherapy equally depends on the activation of a sustained immune response targeting cancer antigens and the susceptibility of cancer cells to immune effector mechanisms. Using functional expression cloning and T-cell receptor (TCR) transgenic mice, we have identified cyclooxygenase 2/prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 (COX-2) as resistance factor against the cytotoxicity induced by activated, antigen-specific T cells. Expressing COX-2, but not a catalytically inactive COX-2 mutant, increased the clonogenic survival of E1A-transformed murine cancer cells when cocultured with lymphocytes from St42Rag2 − / − mice harboring a transgenic TCR directed against an E1A epitope. COX-2 expressing tumors established in immune-deficient mice were less susceptible to adoptive immunotherapy with TCR transgenic lymphocytes in vivo. Also, immune surveillance of COX-2-positive tumor cells in TCR transgenic mice was less efficient. The growth of murine MC-GP tumors, which show high endogenous COX-2 expression, in immunocompetent mice was effectively suppressed by treatment with a selective COX-2 inhibitor, celecoxib. Mechanistically, COX-2 expression blunted the interferon-gamma release of antigen-specific T cells exposed to their respective cellular targets, and increased the expression of interleukin-4 and indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase by tumor cells. Addition of interferon-gamma sensitized COX-2 expressing cancer cells to tumor suppression by antigen-specific T cells. In conclusion, COX-2, which is frequently induced in colorectal cancer, contributes to immune evasion and resistance to antigen-specific cancer immunotherapy by local suppression of T-cell effector functions. Cell Death and Disease (2014) 5, e1568; doi:10.1038/cddis.2014.531; published online 11 December 2014Cell Death & Disease 12/2014; · 5.18 Impact Factor