JOURNAL ARTICLE

Programmed death receptor-1/programmed death receptor ligand-1 blockade after transient lymphodepletion to treat myeloma

Tyce J Kearl, Weiqing Jing, Jill A Gershan, Bryon D Johnson
Journal of Immunology 2013 June 1, 190 (11): 5620-8
23616570
Early phase clinical trials targeting the programmed death receptor-1/ligand-1 (PD-1/PD-L1) pathway to overcome tumor-mediated immunosuppression have reported promising results for a variety of cancers. This pathway appears to play an important role in the failure of immune reactivity to malignant plasma cells in multiple myeloma patients, as the tumor cells express relatively high levels of PD-L1, and T cells show increased PD-1 expression. In the current study, we demonstrate that PD-1/PD-L1 blockade with a PD-L1-specific Ab elicits rejection of a murine myeloma when combined with lymphodepleting irradiation. This particular combined approach by itself has not previously been shown to be efficacious in other tumor models. The antitumor effect of lymphodepletion/anti-PD-L1 therapy was most robust when tumor Ag-experienced T cells were present either through cell transfer or survival after nonmyeloablative irradiation. In vivo depletion of CD4 or CD8 T cells completely eliminated antitumor efficacy of the lymphodepletion/anti-PD-L1 therapy, indicating that both T cell subsets are necessary for tumor rejection. Elimination of myeloma by T cells occurs relatively quickly as tumor cells in the bone marrow were nearly nondetectable by 5 d after the first anti-PD-L1 treatment, suggesting that antimyeloma reactivity is primarily mediated by preactivated T cells, rather than newly generated myeloma-reactive T cells. Anti-PD-L1 plus lymphodepletion failed to improve survival in two solid tumor models, but demonstrated significant efficacy in two hematologic malignancy models. In summary, our results support the clinical testing of lymphodepletion and PD-1/PD-L1 blockade as a novel approach for improving the survival of patients with multiple myeloma.

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