Blockade of interleukin-23 signaling results in targeted protection of the colon and allows for separation of graft-versus-host and graft-versus-leukemia responses
Bone Marrow Transplant Program, Milwaukee, WI 53226, USA.Blood (Impact Factor: 10.45). 04/2010; 115(25):5249-58. DOI: 10.1182/blood-2009-11-255422
Allogeneic stem cell transplantation is the most potent form of effective adoptive immunotherapy. The graft-versus-leukemia (GVL) effect mediated by the allogeneic graft, however, is typically coexpressed with graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), which is the major complication of allogeneic stem cell transplantation. In this study, we used genetic and antibody-based strategies to examine the effect that blockade of interleukin 23 (IL-23) signaling had on GVH and GVL reactivity in murine transplantation recipients. These studies demonstrate that the selective protection of the colon that occurs as a consequence of inhibition of IL-23 signaling reduces GVHD without loss of the GVL effect. The separation of GVH and GVL reactivity was noted in both acute and chronic hematologic malignancy models, indicating that this approach was not restricted by the kinetic profile of the underlying leukemia. Furthermore, a potent GVL response could be mounted in the colon under conditions where tumor cells migrated to this site, indicating that this organ did not serve as a sanctuary site for subsequent systemic relapse in GVHD-protected animals. These studies demonstrate that blockade of IL-23 signaling is an effective strategy for separating GVH and GVL responses and identify IL-23 as a therapeutic target for the regulation of alloresponses in humans.
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ABSTRACT: In leukemic mice, the native host's explicit and well-defined immune reactions to the leukemia virus (a strong exogenous antigen) and to leukemia cells (pretending in their native hosts to be protected "self" elements) are extinguished and replaced in GvHD (graft-versus-host disease) by those of the immunocompetent donor cells. In many cases, the GvHD-inducer donors display genetically encoded resistance to the leukemia virus. In human patients only antileukemia and anti-tumor cell immune reactions are mobilized; thus, patients are deprived of immune reactions to a strong exogenous antigen (the elusive human leukemia-sarcoma retroviruses). The innate and adaptive immune systems of mice have to sustain the immunosuppressive effects of leukemia-inducing retroviruses. Human patients due to the lack of leukemiainducing retroviral pathogens (if they exist, they have not as yet been discovered), escape such immunological downgrading. After studying leukemogenic retroviruses in murine and feline (and other mammalian) hosts, it is very difficult to dismiss retroviral etiology for human leukemias and sarcomas. Since no characterized and thus recognized leukemogenic-sarcomagenic retroviral agents are being isolated from the vast majority of human leukemias-sarcomas, the treatment for these conditions in mice and in human patients vastly differ. It is immunological and biological modalities (alpha interferons; vaccines; adoptive lymphocyte therapy) that dominate the treatment of murine leukemias, whereas combination chemotherapy remains the main remission-inducing agent in human leukemias-lymphomas and sarcomas (as humanized monoclonal antibodies and immunotoxins move in). Yet, in this apparently different backgrounds in Mus and Homo, GvHD, as a treatment modality, appears to work well in both hosts, by replacing the hosts' anti-leukemia and anti-tumor immune faculties with those of the donor. The clinical application of GvHD in the treatment of human leukemias-lymphomas and malignant solid tumors remains a force worthy of pursuit, refinement and strengthening. Graft engineering and modifications of the inner immunological environment of the recipient host by the activation or administration of tumor memory T cells, selected Treg cells and natural killer (NKT) cell classes and cytokines, and the improved pharmacotherapy of GvHD without reducing its antitumor efficacy, will raise the value of GvHD to the higher ranks of the effective antitumor immunotherapeutical measures. Clinical interventions of HCT/HSCT (hematopoietic cell/stem cell transplants) are now applicable to an extended spectrum of malignant diseases in human patients, being available to elderly patients, who receive non-myeloablative conditioning, are re-enforced by post-transplant donor lymphocyte (NK cell and immune T cell) infusions and post-transplant vaccinations, and the donor cells may derive from engineered grafts, or from cord blood with reduced GvHD, but increased GvL/GvT-inducing capabilities (graft-versus leukemia/tumor). Post-transplant T cell transfusions are possible only if selected leukemia antigen-specific T cell clones are available. In verbatim quotation: "Ultimately, advances in separation of GvT from GvHD will further enhance the potential of allogeneic HCT as a curative treatment for hematological malignancies" (Rezvani, A.R. and Storb, R.F., Journal of Autoimmunity 30:172-179, 2008 (see in the text)). It may be added: for cure, a combination of the GvL/T effects with new targeted therapeutic modalities, as elaborated on in this article, will be necessary.Acta Microbiologica et Immunologica Hungarica 12/2010; 57(4):253-347. DOI:10.1556/AMicr.57.2010.4.2 · 0.78 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Graft vs. host disease (GVHD) is mediated by donor T cells that recognize minor and major MHC disparities in the host and initiate an inflammatory cascade the results in tissue damage in specific GVHD target organs. Over the past 20 years, multiple different T cell subsets under control of specific transcription factors have been described. Of these, the TH1 pathway in which T cells generate IFNγ under control of the transcription factor T-bet has been most closely associated with GVHD. Quite recently, several new T cell subsets have been discovered. TH17 cells are a recently defined subset in which the cells are differentiated in the presence of IL-6, TGF-β1, and IL-1β and expanded by the cytokine IL-23. RORγt and RORα are the critical transcription factors necessary for the generation of TH17 cells. Here, we have reviewed the current data on the roles of TH17 cells and the proteins critical for their generation in the pathogenesis of acute and chronic GVHD. Both data from murine models and clinical studies have been evaluated. While a definitive role for TH17 cells remains to be established, current data suggests that TH1/TH17 cells together may be critical mediators of tissue pathology during GVHD.12/2010: pages 341-365;
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ABSTRACT: Graft-versus-host disease (GvHD), a major complication following allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, is mediated by donor-derived T cells. On activation with alloantigens expressed on host antigen-presenting cells, naive CD4(+) T cells differentiate into T-helper cell subsets of effector T cells expressing distinct sets of transcriptional factors and cytokines. Classically, acute GvHD was suggested to be predominantly related to Th1 responses. However, we now face a completely different and complex scenario involving possible roles of newly identified Th17 cells as well as Tregs in GvHD. Accumulating data from experimental and clinical studies suggest that the fine balance between Th1, Th2, Th17 and Tregs after transplantation may be an important determinant of the severity, manifestation and tissue distribution of GvHD. Understanding the dynamic process of reciprocal differentiation of regulatory and T-helper cell subsets as well as their interactions will be important in establishing novel strategies for preventing and treating GvHD.Immunotherapy 07/2011; 3(7):833-52. DOI:10.2217/imt.11.51 · 2.07 Impact Factor
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