Interleukin-15/interleukin-15R alpha complexes promote destruction of established tumors by reviving tumor-resident CD8+ T cells.
ABSTRACT Tumors often escape immune-mediated destruction by suppressing lymphocyte infiltration or effector function. New approaches are needed that overcome this suppression and thereby augment the tumoricidal capacity of tumor-reactive lymphocytes. The cytokine interleukin-15 (IL-15) promotes proliferation and effector capacity of CD8(+) T cells, natural killer (NK) cells, and NKT cells; however, it has a short half-life and high doses are needed to achieve functional responses in vivo. The biological activity of IL-15 can be dramatically increased by complexing this cytokine to its soluble receptor, IL-15R alpha. Here, we report that in vivo delivery of IL-15/IL-15R alpha complexes triggers rapid and significant regression of established solid tumors in two murine models. Despite a marked expansion of IL-2/IL-15R beta(+) cells in lymphoid organs and peripheral blood following treatment with IL-15/IL-15R alpha complexes, the destruction of solid tumors was orchestrated by tumor-resident rather than newly infiltrating CD8(+) T cells. Our data provide novel insights into the use of IL-15/IL-15R alpha complexes to relieve tumor-resident T cells from functional suppression by the tumor microenvironment and have significant implications for cancer immunotherapy and treatment of chronic infections.
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ABSTRACT: The adoptive transfer of tumor-specific T cells expanded in vitro can be of significant therapeutic value in select cancer patients. This strategy is limited though, as it is often difficult, if not impossible, to obtain T cells of clinical value. The transfer of TCR genes to mature T cells to generate tumor-reactive T cells provides a potential mechanism to overcome these limitations. To evaluate the feasibility of such an approach and the quality of the resulting T cells, we generated replication-deficient retroviral vectors using the well-characterized OT-1 TCR genes. After transducing murine T cells, we were able to expand large numbers of Ag-specific T cells that were functionally active against tumor cells expressing the relevant Ag. Furthermore, we found that T cells expressing retrovirally encoded TCR had avidity that was similar to that of the parental clone. This maintenance of avidity was despite variable expression of the retrovirally encoded TCR and the presence of potentially competing endogenous TCRs. These results suggest that the inherent qualities of the TCR, as dictated by the coding sequence, are the most critical parameters in the generation of high-avidity T cells.The Journal of Immunology 03/2003; 170(3):1209-17. · 5.52 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: We have used organ culture of fetal thymic lobes from T cell receptor (TCR) transgenic beta 2M(-/-) mice to study the role of peptides in positive selection. The TCR used was from a CD8+ T cell specific for ovalbumin 257-264 in the context of Kb. Several peptides with the ability to induce positive selection were identified. These peptide-selected thymocytes have the same phenotype as mature CD8+ T cells and can respond to antigen. Those peptides with the ability to induce positive selection were all variants of the antigenic peptide and were identified as TCR antagonist peptides for this receptor. One peptide tested, E1, induced positive selection on the beta 2M(-/-) background but negative selection on the beta 2M(+/-) background. These results show that the process of positive selection is exquisitely peptide specific and sensitive to extremely low ligand density and support the notion that low efficacy ligands mediate positive selection.Cell 02/1994; 76(1):17-27. · 31.96 Impact Factor
Article: Homeostasis of memory T cells.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The pool of memory T cells is regulated by homeostatic mechanisms to persist for prolonged periods at a relatively steady overall size. Recent work has shown that two members of the common gamma chain (gammac) family of cytokines, interleukin-7 (IL-7) and IL-15, govern homeostasis of memory T cells. These two cytokines work in conjunction to support memory T-cell survival and intermittent background proliferation. Normal animals contain significant numbers of spontaneously arising memory-phenotype (MP) cells, though whether these cells are representative of true antigen-specific memory T cells is unclear. Nevertheless, it appears that the two types of memory cells do not display identical homeostatic requirements. For antigen-specific memory CD8+ T cells, IL-7 is primarily important for survival while IL-15 is crucial for their background proliferation. For memory CD4+ T cells, IL-7 has an important role, whereas the influence of IL-15 is still unclear.Immunological Reviews 07/2006; 211:154-63. · 12.16 Impact Factor