Prolonged survival in mice with advanced tumors treated with syngeneic or allogeneic intra-bone marrow-bone marrow transplantation plus fetal thymus transplantation

Naoki Hosaka, Wenhao Cui, Yuming Zhang, Takashi Takaki, Muneo Inaba, Susumu Ikehara
Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy: CII 2010, 59 (7): 1121-30
Thymic function decreases in line with tumor progression in patients with cancer, resulting in immunodeficiency and a poor prognosis. In the present study, we attempted to restore thymic function by BALB/c (H-2(d)) syngeneic (Syn), or B6 (H-2(b)) allogeneic (Allo) bone marrow transplantation (BMT) using intra-bone marrow-bone marrow transplantation (IBM-BMT) plus Syn-, Allo- or C3H (H-2(k)) 3rd-party fetal thymus transplantation (TT). Although the BALB/c mice with advanced tumors (Meth-A sarcoma; H-2(d), >4 cm(2)) treated with either Syn- or Allo-BMT alone showed a slight improvement in survival compared with non-treated controls, the mice treated with BMT + TT showed a longer survival. The mice treated with Allo-BMT + Allo-TT or 3rd-party TT showed the longest survival. Interestingly, although there was no difference in main tumor size among the BMT groups, lung metastasis was significantly inhibited by Allo-BMT + Allo-TT or 3rd-party TT. Numbers of CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells, Con A response, and IFN-gamma production increased significantly, whereas number of Gr-1(+)/CD11b(+) myeloid suppressor cells and the percentage of FoxP3(+) cells in CD4(+) T cells significantly decreased in these mice. Furthermore, there was a positive correlation between survival days and the number of T cells or T cell function, while there was a negative correlation between survival days and lung metastasis, the number of Gr-1(+)/CD11b(+) cells, or the percentage of FoxP3(+) cells. These results suggest that BMT + TT, particularly Allo-BMT + Allo-TT or 3rd-party TT, is most effective in prolonging survival as a result of the restoration of T cell function in hosts with advanced tumors.


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