[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Highly immunogenic cancers such as malignant melanoma are capable of inexorable tumor growth despite the presence of antitumor immunity. Thus, only a restricted minority of tumorigenic malignant cells may possess the phenotypic and functional characteristics needed to modulate tumor-directed immune activation. Here we provide evidence supporting this hypothesis. Tumorigenic ABCB5(+) malignant melanoma initiating cells (MMICs) possessed the capacity to preferentially inhibit IL-2-dependent T-cell activation and to support, in a B7.2-dependent manner, induction of CD4(+)CD25(+)FoxP3(+) regulatory T cells (Tregs). Compared with melanoma bulk cell populations, ABCB5(+) MMICs displayed lower levels of MHC class I, aberrant positivity for MHC class II, and lower expression levels of the melanoma-associated antigens MART-1, ML-IAP, NY-ESO-1, and MAGE-A. Additionally, these tumorigenic ABCB5(+) subpopulations preferentially expressed the costimulatory molecules B7.2 and PD-1, both in established melanoma xenografts and in clinical tumor specimens. In immune activation assays, MMICs inhibited mitogen-dependent human peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) proliferation and IL-2 production more efficiently than ABCB5(-) melanoma cell populations. Moreover, coculture with ABCB5(+) MMICs increased the abundance of Tregs, in a B7.2 signaling-dependent manner, along with IL-10 production by mitogen-activated PBMCs. Consistent with these findings, MMICs also preferentially inhibited IL-2 production and induced IL-10 secretion by cocultured patient-derived, syngeneic PBMCs. Our findings identify novel T-cell modulatory functions of ABCB5(+) melanoma subpopulations and suggest specific roles for these MMICs in the evasion of antitumor immunity and in cancer immunotherapeutic resistance.
Cancer Research 01/2010; 70(2):697-708. · 8.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Blockade of the B7: CD28 costimulatory pathway has emerged as a promising therapy to prevent allograft rejection. However, this pathway has also been demonstrated to be important for the generation and maintenance of regulatory T cells. In this study, we investigated the role of the B7: CD28 pathway in the 'bm12 into B6' MHC class II-mismatched vascularized cardiac transplant model of chronic rejection. Allograft rejection was remarkably accelerated in B6 background B7DKO and CD28KO recipients compared with B6 wild-type (WT) recipients. Allograft rejection was associated with a significantly enhanced Th1/Th2 alloreactivity and marked reduction in the ratio of regulatory T cells to CD4(+) effector/memory cells. We noted that administration of anti-B7-1 and anti-B7-2 mAb prior to transplantation also accelerated allograft rejection. Furthermore, depleting CD25(+) cells in B6 WT recipients of bm12 hearts prior to transplant also precipitated rejection at a similar rate. Neither B7/CD28 deficiency nor CD25 depletion affected graft survival in single MHC class I-mismatched (bm1 into B6) recipients. This study highlights the paradoxical functions of B7: CD28 costimulation in a MHC class II-mismatched model, in which the B7: CD28 pathway is demonstrated to be important in preventing rejection through the generation and maintenance of Tregs.
American Journal of Transplantation 10/2009; 9(12):2837-44. · 6.19 Impact Factor