Enhancing dendritic cell-based immunotherapy with IL-2/monoclonal antibody complexes for control of established tumors

Academic Article


  • U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved high-dose IL-2 therapy and dendritic cell (DC) immunization offer time-tested treatments for malignancy, but with defined issues of short in vivo t1/2, toxicity, and modest clinical benefit. Complexes of IL-2 with specific mAbs (IL-2c) exhibit improved stability in vivo with reduced toxicity and are capable of stimulating NK cell and memory phenotype CD8 T cell proliferation. In this study, we demonstrate that IL-2c treatment in tumor-bearing mice can enhance NK cell and tumor-specific CD8 T cell numbers. Importantly, DC immunization coupled with stabilized IL-2c infusion drastically improves the tumor-specific effector CD8 T cell response. DC + IL-2c treatment enhances number, 41BB and GITR expression, granzyme B production, CTL/regulatory T cell ratio, and per-cell killing capacity of CD8 T cells without increasing inhibitory molecule expression. Notably, IL-2c treatment of anti-CD3-stimulated human CD8 T cells resulted in higher number and granzyme B production, supporting the translational potential of this immunotherapy strategy for human malignancy. DC + IL-2c treatment enhances both endogenous NK cell and tumor Ag-specific CD8 T cell immunity to provide a marked reduction in tumor burden in multiple models of pre-existing malignancy in B6 and BALB/c mice. Depletion studies reveal contributions from both tumorspecific CD8 T cells and NK cells in control of tumor burden after DC + IL-2c treatment. Together, these data suggest that combination therapy with DC and IL-2c may be a potent treatment for malignancy.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Kim MT; Richer MJ; Gross BP; Norian LA; Badovinac VP; Harty JT
  • Start Page

  • 4537
  • End Page

  • 4544
  • Volume

  • 195
  • Issue

  • 9