Cytotherapy, August 2015, Vol.17(8), pp.1139-1151
Human cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection and reactivation is a leading complication of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). In addition to drug treatment, the adoptive transfer of virus-specific T cells to restore cellular immunity has become a standard therapy after allogeneic HSCT. We recently demonstrated potent anti-leukemic activity of interleukin (IL)-15–activated cytokine-induced killer (CIK) cells. With the use of the same expansion protocol, we asked whether concurrent CMV antigen-pulsing might generate CIK cells with anti-leukemic and anti-CMV activity. CIK cells expanded in the presence of interferon-γ, IL-2, IL-15 and anti-CD3 antibody were pulsed once with CMVpp65 peptide pool. CMV-specific CIK (CIK ) and conventional CIK cells were phenotypically and functionally characterized according to their cytokine secretion pattern, degranulation capacity and T-cell receptor (TCR)-mediated and NKG2D-mediated cytotoxicity. We demonstrated that among CIK cells generated from CMV-seropositive donors, a single stimulation with CMVpp65 protein co-expanded cytotoxic CMV-specific cells without sacrificing anti-tumor reactivity. Cells generated in this fashion lysed CMVpp65-loaded target cells and CMV-infected fibroblasts but also leukemic cells. Meanwhile, the alloreactive potential of CIK cells remained low. Interestingly, CMV reactivity was TCR-mediated and CMV-specific cells could be found in CD3 CD8 CD56 cytotoxic T-cell subpopulations. We provide an efficient method to generate CIK cells that may represent a useful cell therapy approach for preemptive immunotherapy in patients who have both an apparent risk of CMV and impending leukemic relapse after allogeneic stem cell transplantation.
Cik Cells ; Cmv ; Cytotoxicity ; Immunotherapy ; Leukemia ; Pharmacy, Therapeutics, & Pharmacology
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