Alterations in signal transduction molecules in T lymphocytes from tumor-bearing mice

H Mizoguchi, J J O'Shea, D L Longo, C M Loeffler, D W McVicar, A C Ochoa
Science 1992 December 11, 258 (5089): 1795-8
Impaired immune responses occur frequently in cancer patients or in tumor-bearing mice, but the mechanisms of the tumor-induced immune defects remain poorly understood. In an in vivo murine colon carcinoma model (MCA-38), animals bearing a tumor longer than 26 days develop CD8+ T cells with impaired cytotoxic function, decreased expression of the tumor necrosis factor-alpha and granzyme B genes, and decreased ability to mediate an antitumor response in vivo. T lymphocytes from tumor-bearing mice expressed T cell antigen receptors that contained low amounts of CD3 gamma and completely lacked CD3 zeta, which was replaced by the Fc epsilon gamma-chain. Expression of the tyrosine kinases p56lck and p59fyn was also reduced. These changes could be the basis of immune defects in tumor-bearing hosts.

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