Topoisomerase inhibitors modulate expression of melanocytic antigens and enhance T cell recognition of tumor cells

Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy : CII
Timothy J HaggertyJames T Kurnick


While there are many obstacles to immune destruction of autologous tumors, there is mounting evidence that tumor antigen recognition does occur. Unfortunately, immune recognition rarely controls clinically significant tumors. Even the most effective immune response will fail if tumors fail to express target antigens. Importantly, reduced tumor antigen expression often results from changes in gene regulation rather than irrevocable loss of genetic information. Such perturbations are often reversible by specific compounds or biological mediators, prompting a search for agents with improved antigen-enhancing properties. Some recent findings have suggested that certain conventional chemotherapeutic agents may have beneficial properties for cancer treatment beyond their direct cytotoxicities against tumor cells. Accordingly, we screened an important subset of these agents, topoisomerase inhibitors, for their effects on antigen levels in tumor cells. Our analyses demonstrate upregulation of antigen expression in a variety of melanoma cell lines and gliomas in response to nanomolar levels of certain specific topoisomerase inhibitors. To demonstrate the ability of CD8+ T cells to recognize tumors, we assayed cytokine secretion in T cel...Continue Reading


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