[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Lymphedema of the arm is the most common and impairing complication after breast cancer surgery with axillary lymph node dissection (ALND). Our prospective study evaluated the effect of two different surgical techniques for ALND on postoperative morbidity. Patients were scheduled to undergo ALND. Patients in group 1 (n = 17) underwent the most common and standard technique of ALND, which uses sharp dissection of the tissue and subsequent electro-coagulation of bleedings. Patients in group 2 (n = 17) underwent a modified standard technique of ALND with clamping and ligatures of all resection margins. Postoperative wound secretion was quantified and patients were followed up for 6 months to assess long-term morbidity. The variations in surgical technique had no significant influence on the outcome variables. However, patients in group 2 showed a tendency to less wound secretion (713 versus 802 mL; P = nonsignificant), a decreased rate of immediate postoperative seromas (11.8 versus 23.5%; P = nonsignificant) and less lymphedema after 3 months (29.4 versus 41.2%; P = nonsignificant). Moreover, the number of resected lymph nodes correlated with the total amount of drained fluid (P = 0.006), the duration of the drain (P = 0.015), and the risk for the development of lymphedema after 3 months (P = 0.016). The described variations in surgical technique had no influence on the outcomes of the patients. The number of resected axillary lymph nodes remains the most important risk factor for treatment-related morbidity. Therefore, a well-balanced choice of the extent of the axillary dissection should be the surgeon's main concern.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Antigen-derived HLA class I-restricted peptides can generate specific CD8(+) T-cell responses in vivo and are therefore often used as vaccines for patients with cancer. However, only occasional objective clinical responses have been reported suggesting the necessity of CD4(+) T-cell help and possibly antibodies for the induction of an effective anti-tumor immunity in vivo. The SSX2 gene encodes the cancer testis antigen (CTA) HOM-MEL-40/SSX2, which is frequently expressed in a wide spectrum of cancers. Both humoral and cellular immune responses against SSX2 have been described making SSX2 an attractive candidate for vaccine trials.
SYFPEITHI algorithm was used to predict five pentadecamer peptides with a high binding probability for six selected HLA-DRB1 subtypes (*0101, *0301, *0401, *0701, *1101, *1501) which are prevalent in the Caucasian population.
Using peripheral blood cells of 13 cancer patients and 5 healthy controls, the HOM-MEL-40/SSX2-derived peptide p101-111 was identified as an epitope with dual immunogenicity for both CD4(+) helper and cytotoxic CD8(+) T cells. This epitope also reacted with anti-SSX2 antibodies in the serum of a patient with breast cancer. Most remarkably, SSX2/p101-111 simultaneously induced specific CD8, CD4, and antibody responses in vitro.
p101-111 is the first CTA-derived peptide which induces CD4(+), CD8(+), and B-cell responses in vitro. This triple-immunogenic peptide represents an attractive vaccine candidate for the induction of effective anti-tumor immunity.
Cancer Immunology and Immunotherapy 06/2011; 60(9):1333-46. · 3.64 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To determine the expression of cancer testis (CT) genes and antibody responses in a nonselected population of patients with primary breast cancer, we investigated the composite expression of 11 CT genes by RT-PCR in fresh biopsies of 100 consecutive cases of primary breast carcinoma and by immunohistology in selected RT-PCR-positive cases. Antibody responses against 7 CT antigens were analyzed using recombinant antigen expression on yeast surface. In 98 evaluable cases, SCP-1 and SSX-4 were expressed most frequently (both 65%), followed by HOM-TES-85/CT-8 (47%), GAGE (26%), SSX-1 (20%), NY-ESO-1 (13%), MAGE-3 (11%), SSX-2 (8%), CT-10 (7%), MAGE-4 (4%) and CT-7 (1%). One CT gene was expressed by 90% of the cases; 79% expressed > or =2, 48% > or =3, 29% > or =4, 12% > or =5, 6% > or =6, 3% > or =7, 2% > or =8 and one case coexpressed 9 antigens. Of 100 serum samples screened for CT antigen-specific antibodies, antibodies against NY-ESO-1 were detected in 4 patients, against SCP-1 in 6 patients and against SSX-2 in 1 patient, while no antibodies were detected against MAGE-3, CT-7 and CT-10. Expression of CT genes or antibody responses was not correlated with clinical parameters (menopausal status, tumor size, nodal involvement, grading, histology and estrogen receptor status) or the demonstration of CT gene expression at the protein level, by immunohistology. Our results show that breast carcinomas are among the tumors with the most frequent expression of CT antigens, rendering many patients potential candidates for vaccine trials.
International Journal of Cancer 02/2006; 118(3):696-703. · 6.20 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The SSX2 gene encodes the tumor-specific antigen HOM-MEL-40/SSX2 expressed in a broad spectrum of tumors of different origin, against which humoral and CD8+ T-cell-mediated MHC-I-restricted responses have been demonstrated. Searching for promiscuous MHC-II-restricted peptides that might be suitable as a CD4+ stimulating vaccine for many patients, we used the SYFPEITHI algorithm and identified a HOM-MEL-40/SSX2-derived pentadecamer epitope (p45-59) that induced specific CD4+ T-cell responses restricted by the HLA-DRB1 subtypes *0701, *1101 and *1302 that have a cumulative prevalence of approximately 25% in the Caucasian population. The CD4+-mediated response against p45-59 and its DR restriction was demonstrated by inhibition with anti-CD4 and HLA-DR antibodies, respectively, and by blocking experiments using HLA-specific antibodies. The natural processing and presentation of p45-59 was demonstrated by recognition of the SSX2+ melanoma cell line Me 275 as well as autologous and allogeneic dendritic cells pulsed with whole-protein SSX2 by T cells with specificity for p45-59. p45-59 was able to induce responses in 3/6 breast cancer patients and 1/5 healthy controls. No correlation was found between CD4+ T-cell responses against p45-59 reactivity and anti-SSX2 antibody titers in the serum of patients, suggesting that CD4+ and B-cell responses are regulated independently. p45-59 holds promise as a broadly applicable peptide vaccine for patients with SSX2-positive neoplasms.
International Journal of Cancer 12/2004; 112(4):661-8. · 6.20 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report of a case of Meckel Gruber Syndrome (MGS) in a woman, who suffered previously from a pregnancy with the same disorder. MGS, consisting of an occipital encephalocele, bilateral cystic kidneys and postaxial polydactyly, is a rare autosomal recessive disorder, with a recurrence risk of 25%. With the present technology, a targeted ultrasound in the late embryonic or early fetal stages of pregnancy has the potential to diagnose this syndrome. Clinical screening in further pregnancies is of utmost importance and the management of such cases is presented.
European Journal of Ultrasound 07/2002; 15(1-2):69-72.