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Photochemical treatment of donor lymphocytes inhibited their ability to facilitate donor engraftment or increase donor chimerism after nonmyeloablative conditioning or establishment of mixed chimerism

Bryon D Johnson, Patricia A Taylor, Marja C Stankowski, Sohel Talib, John E Hearst, Bruce R Blazar
Biology of Blood and Marrow Transplantation 2002, 8 (11): 581-7
12463476
Donor T-cells can provide a graft-versus-leukemia effect and help to promote donor engraftment after allogeneic BMT; however, these benefits can be outweighed by the ability of the cells to induce life-threatening GVHD. Photochemical treatment (PCT) of T-cells with S-59 psoralen and long-wavelength UV-A light can inhibit their proliferative capacity and significantly decrease their ability to induce acute GVHD after allogeneic BMT. PCT donor T-cells have been shown to facilitate donor engraftment in a myeloablative BMT model. In this study, we examined whether donor T-cells subjected to PCT ex vivo could retain the ability to facilitate engraftment or increase donor chimerism after nonmyeloablative BMT or after establishment of mixed hematopoietic chimerism. In a transplantation model in which mice were conditioned for BMT with sublethal (600 cGy) TBI, an infusion of PCT donor T-cells was unable to facilitate engraftment of donor BM. A BMT model was used in which a mixture of allogeneic and syngeneic marrow cells was infused into lethally irradiated recipients for establishment of mixed hematopoietic chimerism. The goal was to determine whether PCT donor splenocytes could increase levels of donor chimerism. Recipients of splenocytes treated with UV-A light only (no S-59 psoralen) and given at the time of BMT or in a donor lymphocyte infusion (DLI) had significantly higher levels of donor chimerism than did recipients of BM only. Although PCT donor splenocytes given at the time of BMT modestly increased donor chimerism, PCT donor splenocytes given in a DLI did not increase donor chimerism. A nonmyeloablative BMT model was employed for determining whether DLI given relatively late after BMT could increase donor chimerism. Recipient mice were conditioned for BMT with a combination of low-dose TBI (50 or 100 cGy) and anti-CD154 (anti-CD40L) monoclonal antibody for achievement of low levels of mixed chimerism. When control mixed chimeras were given a DLI 71 days after BMT, donor chimerism was significantly increased. In contrast, PCT of the donor cells eliminated the ability of the cells to increase donor chimerism after infusion. Together results from these 3 distinct BMT models indicate that PCT of donor T-cells significantly inhibited the ability of the cells to facilitate donor engraftment after nonmyeloablative BMT or to increase donor chimerism in mixed hematopoietic chimeras when the cells were administered in a DLI.

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