Bond Almand

University of Washington Seattle, Seattle, Washington, United States

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Publications (11)35.65 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Advancements in our understanding of the immune system have ushered in a new era of immune-based therapeutic strategies to treat and prevent cancer. However, the success of refining and clinical testing of these novel therapeutic strategies has required the development of new ways to monitor tumor and immune responses for a number of reasons. First, in vitro measures of the immune response are limited, and do not reflect important immune events that occur in vivo. Second, commonly used tumor response criteria may not be indicative of therapeutic activity. Lastly, typical approaches to defining the dose of a drug to treat cancer are not applicable to immune-based cancers. These problems have led to the development of newer monitoring strategies including a wide variety of whole-bodyimaging approaches. Imaging can provide insight into the actions of immune-based therapies that ordinarily would not be possible, and will likely result in enhanced decision making as to what strategies should, or should not be, moved into advanced clinical testing. In this chapter, a number of imaging techniques are discussed as well as their application to the development, understanding, and clinical monitoring of immune-based therapies.
    No preview · Chapter · Oct 2007
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    ABSTRACT: Studies in cancer patients have suggested that breast tumors recruit regulatory T cells (Tregs) into the tumor microenvironment. The extent to which local Tregs suppress antitumor immunity in breast cancer is unknown. We questioned whether inhibiting systemic Tregs with an IL-2 immunotoxin in a model of neu-mediated breast cancer, the neu-transgenic mouse, could impact disease progression and survival. As in human breast cancer, cancers that develop in these mice attract Tregs into the tumor microenvironment to levels of approximately 10-25% of the total CD4+ T cells. To examine the role of Tregs in blocking immune-mediated rejection of tumor, we depleted CD4+CD25+ T cells with an IL-2 immunotoxin. The treatment depleted Tregs without concomitant lymphopenia and markedly inhibited tumor growth. Depletion of Tregs resulted in a persistent antitumor response that was maintained over a month after the last treatment. The clinical response was immune-mediated because adoptive transfer of Tregs led to a complete abrogation of the therapeutic effects of immunotoxin treatment. Further, Treg down-modulation was accompanied by increased Ag-specific immunity against the neu protein, a self Ag. These results suggest that Tregs play a major role in preventing an effective endogenous immune response against breast cancer and that depletion of Tregs, without any additional immunotherapy, may mediate a significant antitumor response.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2006 · The Journal of Immunology

  • No preview · Article · Nov 2005 · Journla of Immunotherapy
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    Keith L Knutson · Bond Almand · Yushe Dang · Mary L Disis
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    ABSTRACT: Prolonged administration of HER-2/neu-specific monoclonal antibody therapy is now widely used for the treatment of HER-2/neu-overexpressing tumors in advanced-stage breast cancer patients. Monoclonal antibody therapy has the potential to promote reduced tumor expression of HER-2/neu by receptor down-modulation and/or the generation of antigen-negative variants. Loss of antigen by either mechanism could potentially impact subsequent therapeutic strategies targeting HER-2/neu. In this study, the effects of chronic neu-specific monoclonal antibody therapy on tumor growth and neu protein expression were examined in a murine model of neu-overexpressing breast cancer. Treatment of neu-overexpressing tumors with neu-specific antibody, in vitro or in vivo, resulted in significant tumor growth inhibition. When neu antibody was used to treat neu-overexpressing tumor cells both in vitro and in vivo in tumor-bearing mice, neu receptor expression was not diminished after cessation of therapy. However, in the setting of clinically undetectable disease in a fraction of animals, antigen-negative variants were generated. An understanding of the effects of monoclonal antibodies on target antigen expression is critical for the future design and testing of novel HER-2/neu-targeted therapies administered in combination with or after HER-2/neu-specific monoclonal antibody therapy.
    Preview · Article · Mar 2004 · Cancer Research
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    Preview · Article · Feb 2003 · Cancer chemotherapy and biological response modifiers
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    ABSTRACT: Solid tumours can be eradicated by infusion of large amounts of tumour-specific T-cells in animal models. The successes seen in preclinical models, however, have not been adequately translated to human disease due, in part, to the inability to expand tumour antigen-specific T-cells ex vivo. Polyclonality and retention of antigen-specificity are two important properties of infused T-cells that are necessary for successful eradication of tumours. Investigators are beginning to evaluate the impact of attempting to reconstitute full T-cell immunity representing both major T-cell subsets, cytolytic T-cells and T-helper (Th) cells. One of the more important and often overlooked steps of successful adoptive T-cell therapy is the ex vivo expansion conditions, which can dramatically alter the phenotype of the T-cell. A number of cytokines and other soluble activation factors that have been characterised over the last decade are now available to supplement in vitro antigen presentation and IL-2. Newer molecular techniques have been developed and are aimed at genetically altering the characteristics of T-cells including their antigen-specificity and growth in vivo. In addition, advanced imaging techniques, such as positron emission tomography (PET), are being implemented in order to better define the in vivo function of ex vivo expanded tumour-specific T-cells.
    Preview · Article · Feb 2002 · Expert Opinion on Biological Therapy
  • B Almand · D P Carbone
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    ABSTRACT: Our understanding of lung cancer biology has rapidly expanded in recent years. Lung cancer, unlike most human cancers, can be traced to an environmental risk factor in the majority of cases, and this fact is reflected in the vast number of genetic alterations discovered in lung tumors whose pathogenesis is believed to be mediated by carcinogen exposure. The discovery of these alterations has led to a greater understanding of tumor development. The dramatic progress in the understanding of the genetic and molecular basis of oncogenesis and the induction of immunity has led to a rejuvenation of efforts to apply this new knowledge to this common and refractory disease. Further, the resurgent interest in cancer immunology and tumor-host interactions holds promise for the development of new approaches to treatment based on harvesting the immune systems ability to recognize these alterations. Hopefully, this understanding will lead to novel approaches with real and convincing clinical efficacy once some of these strategies are tested in carefully performed randomized clinical trials with appropriate power to detect meaningful differences.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2001 · Cancer treatment and research
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    ABSTRACT: Defective dendritic cell (DC) function caused by abnormal differentiation of these cells is an important mechanism of tumor escape from immune system control. Previously, we have demonstrated that the number and function of DC were dramatically reduced in cancer patients. This effect was closely associated with accumulation of immature cells (ImC) in peripheral blood. In this study, we investigated the nature and functional role of those ImC. Using flow cytometry, electron microscopy, colony formation assays, and cell differentiation in the presence of different cell growth factors, we have determined that the population of ImC is composed of a small percentage (<2%) of hemopoietic progenitor cells, with all other cells being represented by MHC class I-positive myeloid cells. About one-third of ImC were immature macrophages and DC, and the remaining cells were immature myeloid cells at earlier stages of differentiation. These cells were differentiated into mature DC in the presence of 1 microM all-trans-retinoic acid. Removal of ImC from DC fractions completely restored the ability of the DC to stimulate allogeneic T cells. In two different experimental systems ImC inhibited Ag-specific T cell responses. Thus, immature myeloid cells generated in large numbers in cancer patients are able to directly inhibit Ag-specific T cell responses. This may represent a new mechanism of immune suppression in cancer and may suggest a new approach to cancer treatment.
    Preview · Article · Jan 2001 · The Journal of Immunology
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    ABSTRACT: Defective dendritic cell (DC) function has been described previously in cancer patients and tumor-bearing mice. It can be an important factor in the escape of tumors from immune system control. However, the mechanism and clinical significance of this phenomenon remain unclear. Here, 93 patients with breast, head and neck, and lung cancer were investigated. The function of peripheral blood and tumor draining lymph node DCs was equally impaired in cancer patients, consistent with a systemic rather than a local effect of tumor on DCs. The number of DCs was dramatically reduced in the peripheral blood of cancer patients. This decrease was associated with the accumulation of cells lacking markers of mature hematopoietic cells. The presence of these immature cells was closely associated with the stage and duration of the disease. Surgical removal of tumor resulted in partial reversal of the observed effects. The presence of immature cells in the peripheral blood of cancer patients was closely associated with an increased plasma level of vascular endothelial growth factor but not interleukin 6, granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor, macrophage colony-stimulating factor, interleukin 10, or transforming growth factor-beta and was decreased in lung cancer patients receiving therapy with antivascular endothelial growth factor antibodies. These data indicate that defective DC function in cancer patients is the result of decreased numbers of competent DCs and the accumulation of immature cells. This effect may have significant clinical implications.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2000 · Clinical Cancer Research
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Publication Stats

1k Citations
35.65 Total Impact Points


  • 2002-2006
    • University of Washington Seattle
      • • Center for Translational Medicine in Women's Health
      • • Division of Oncology
      Seattle, Washington, United States
  • 2001
    • University of South Florida
      Tampa, Florida, United States