Combination epidermal growth factor receptor variant III peptide-pulsed dendritic cell vaccine with miR-326 results in enhanced killing on EGFRvIII-positive cells.
ABSTRACT: The mutant Type III variant of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFRvIII) is present in approximately one-third of glioblastoma (GBM) patients. It is never found in normal tissues; therefore, it represents a candidate target for GBM immunotherapy. PEPvIII, a peptide sequence from EGFRvIII, was designed to represent a target of glioma and is presented by MHC I/II complexes. Dendritic cells (DCs) have great potential to sensitize CD4+ T and CD8+ T cells to precisely target and eradicate GBM. Here, we show that PEPvIII could be loaded by DCs and presented to T lymphocytes, especially PEPvIII-specific CTLs, to precisely kill U87-EGFRvIII cells. In addition to inhibiting proliferation and inducing the apoptosis of U87-EGFRvIII cells, miR-326 also reduced the expression of TGF-?1 in the tumour environment, resulting in improved efficacy of T cell activation and killing via suppressing the SMO/Gli2 axis, which at least partially reversed the immunosuppressive environment. Furthermore, combining the EGFRvIII-DC vaccine with miR-326 was more effective in killing U87-EGFRvIII cells compared with the administration of either one alone. This finding suggested that a DC-based vaccine combined with miR-326 may induce more powerful anti-tumour immunity against GBM cells that express a relevant antigen, which provides a promising approach for GBM immunotherapy.
Project description:Expression of miR-17-92 enhances T-cell survival and interferon (IFN)-? production. We previously reported that miR-17-92 is down-regulated in T-cells derived from glioblastoma (GBM) patients. We hypothesized that transgene-derived co-expression of miR17-92 and chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) in T-cells would improve the efficacy of adoptive transfer therapy against GBM.We constructed novel lentiviral vectors for miR-17-92 (FG12-EF1a-miR-17/92) and a CAR consisting of an epidermal growth factor receptor variant III (EGFRvIII)-specific, single-chain variable fragment (scFv) coupled to the T-cell receptor CD3? chain signaling module and co-stimulatory motifs of CD137 (4-1BB) and CD28 in tandem (pELNS-3C10-CAR). Human T-cells were transduced with these lentiviral vectors, and their anti-tumor effects were evaluated both in vitro and in vivo.CAR-transduced T-cells (CAR-T-cells) exhibited potent, antigen-specific, cytotoxic activity against U87 GBM cells that stably express EGFRvIII (U87-EGFRvIII) and, when co-transduced with miR-17-92, exhibited improved survival in the presence of temozolomide (TMZ) compared with CAR-T-cells without miR-17-92 co-transduction. In mice bearing intracranial U87-EGFRvIII xenografts, CAR-T-cells with or without transgene-derived miR-17-92 expression demonstrated similar levels of therapeutic effect without demonstrating any uncontrolled growth of CAR-T-cells. However, when these mice were re-challenged with U87-EGFRvIII cells in their brains, mice receiving co-transduced CAR-T-cells exhibited improved protection compared with mice treated with CAR-T-cells without miR-17-92 co-transduction.These results warrant the development of novel CAR-T-cell strategies that incorporate miR-17-92 to improve therapeutic potency, especially in patients with GBM.
Project description:The epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutant of EGFRvIII is highly expressed in glioma cells, and the EGFRvIII-specific dendritic cell (DC)-induced tumor antigen-specific CD8(+) cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) may hold promise in cancer immunotherapy. Interferon (IFN)-γ-inducible protein (IP)-10 (IP-10) is a potent inhibitor of angiogenesis and can recruit CXCR3(+) T cells, including CD8(+) T cells, which are important for the control of tumor growth. In this study, we assessed if the combination of IP10-EGFRvIIIscFv with DC-induced CTLs would improve the therapeutic antitumor efficacy. IP10-scFv was generated by linking the human IP-10 gene with the DNA fragment for anti-EGFRvIIIscFv with a (Gly4Ser)3 flexible linker, purified by affinity chromatography, and characterized for its anti-EGFRvIII immunoreactivity and chemotactic activity. DCs were isolated from human peripheral blood monocyte cells and pulsed with EGFRvIII-peptide, then co-cultured with autologous CD8(+) T cells. BALB/c-nu mice were inoculated with human glioma U87-EGFRvIII cells in the brain and treated intracranially with IP10-scFv and/or intravenously with DC-induced CTLs for evaluating the therapeutic effect. Treatment with both IP10-scFv and EGFRvIII peptide-pulsed, DC-induced CTL synergistically inhibited the growth of glioma and prolonged the survival of tumor-bearing mice, which was accompanied by the inhibition of tumor angiogenesis and enhancement of cytotoxicity, thereby increasing the numbers of brain-infiltrating lymphocytes (BILs) and prolonging the residence time of CTLs in the tumor.
Project description:Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most prevalent and lethal malignant intracranial tumor in the brain, with very poor prognosis and survival. The epidermal growth factor receptor variant III (EGFRvIII) contributes to increased oncogenicity that does not occur through binding EGFR ligands and instead occurs through constitutive activation, which enhances glioma tumorigenicity and resistance to targeted therapy. Aptamers are nucleic acids with high affinity and specificity to targets selected by systematic evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment (SELEX), and are usually developed as antagonists of disease-associated factors. Herein, we generated a DNA aptamer U2, targeting U87-EGFRvIII cells, and demonstrated that U2 alters the U87-EGFRvIII cell growth, radiosensitivity, and radiotherapy of glioblastoma cells. We detected U2 and U87-EGFRvIII cells by flow cytometry and confocal microscopy to explore the binding ability of U2 to U87-EGFRvIII cells. Then, we found that aptamer U2 inhibits the proliferation, migration, invasion, and downstream signaling of U87-EGFRvIII cells. Moreover, the U2 aptamer can increase the radiosensitivity of U87-EGFRvIII in vitro and has a better antitumor effect on 188Re-U2 in vivo. Therefore, the results revealed the promising potential of the U2 aptamer to be a new type of drug candidate and aptamer-targeted drug delivery system for glioblastoma therapy.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Glioblastoma (GBM) is an aggressive brain tumor with universal recurrence and poor prognosis. The recurrence is largely driven by chemoradiation resistant cancer stem cells (CSCs). Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and its mutant EGFRvIII are amplified in ~ 60% and ~ 30% of GBM patients, respectively; however, therapies targeting EGFR have failed to improve disease outcome. EGFRvIII-mediated cross-activation of tyrosine kinase receptor, cMET, regulates GBM CSC maintenance and promote tumor recurrence. Here, we evaluated the efficacy of pan-EGFR inhibitor afatinib and Temozolomide (TMZ) combination on GBM in vitro and in vivo. METHODS:We analyzed the effect of afatinib and temozolomide (TMZ) combination on GBM cells U87MG and U251 engineered to express wild type (WT) EGFR, EGFRvIII or EGFRvIII dead kinase, CSCs isolated from U87 and U87EGFRvIII in vitro. The therapeutic utility of the drug combination was investigated on tumor growth and progression using intracranially injected U87EGFRvIII GBM xenografts. RESULTS:Afatinib and TMZ combination synergistically inhibited the proliferation, clonogenic survival, motility, invasion and induced senescence of GBM cells compared to monotherapy. Mechanistically, afatinib decreased U87EGFRvIII GBM cell proliferation and motility/invasion by inhibiting EGFRvIII/AKT, EGFRvIII/JAK2/STAT3, and focal adhesion kinase (FAK) signaling pathways respectively. Interestingly, afatinib specifically inhibited EGFRvIII-cMET crosstalk in CSCs, resulting in decreased expression of Nanog and Oct3/4, and in combination with TMZ significantly decreased their self-renewal property in vitro. More interestingly, afatinib and TMZ combination significantly decreased the xenograft growth and progression compared to single drug alone. CONCLUSION:Our study demonstrated significant inhibition of GBM tumorigenicity, CSC maintenance in vitro, and delayed tumor growth and progression in vivo by combination of afatinib and TMZ. Our results warrant evaluation of this drug combination in EGFR and EGFRvIII amplified GBM patients.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Chemoresistance to temozolomide (TMZ) is a major challenge in the treatment of glioblastoma (GBM). We previously found that miR-519a functions as a tumor suppressor in glioma by targeting the signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3)-mediated autophagy oncogenic pathway. Here, we investigated the effects of miR-519a on TMZ chemosensitivity and autophagy in GBM cells. Furthermore, the underlying molecular mechanisms and signaling pathways were explored. METHODS:In the present study, two stable TMZ-resistant GBM cell lines were successfully generated by exposure of parental cells to a gradually increasing TMZ concentration. After transfecting U87-MG/TMZ and U87-MG cells with miR-519a mimic or inhibitor, a series of biochemical assays such as MTT, apoptosis, and colony formation were performed to determine the chemosensitive response to TMZ. The autophagy levels in GBM cells were detected by transmission electron microscopy, LC3B protein immunofluorescence, and Western blotting analysis. Stable knockdown and overexpression of miR-519a in GBM cells were established using lentivirus. A xenograft nude mouse model and in situ brain model were used to examine the in vivo effects of miR-519a. Tumor tissue samples were collected from 48 patients with GBM and were used to assess the relationship between miR-519a and STAT3 expression. RESULTS:TMZ treatment significantly upregulated miR-519a in U87-MG cells but not in U87-MG/TMZ cells. Moreover, the expression of miR-519a and baseline autophagy levels was lower in U87-MG/TMZ cells as compared to U87-MG cells. miR-519a dramatically enhanced TMZ-induced autophagy and apoptotic cell death in U87-MG/TMZ cells, while inhibition of miR-519a promoted TMZ resistance and reduced TMZ-induced autophagy in U87-MG cells. Furthermore, miR-519a induced autophagy through modification of STAT3 expression. The in vivo results showed that miR-519a can enhance apoptosis and sensitized GBM to TMZ treatment by promoting autophagy and targeting the STAT3/Bcl-2/Beclin-1 pathway. In human GBM tissues, we found an inverse correlation between miR-519a and STAT3 expression. CONCLUSIONS:Our results suggested that miR-519a increased the sensitivity of GBM cells to TMZ therapy. The positive effects of miR-519a may be mediated through autophagy. In addition, miR-519a overexpression can induce autophagy by inhibiting STAT3/Bcl-2 pathway. Therefore, a combination of miR-519a and TMZ may represent an effective therapeutic strategy in GBM.
Project description:Despite aggressive conventional therapy, glioblastoma (GBM) remains uniformly lethal. Immunotherapy, in which the immune system is harnessed to specifically attack malignant cells, offers a treatment option with less toxicity. The expression of cytomegalovirus (CMV) antigens in GBM presents a unique opportunity to target these viral proteins for tumor immunotherapy. Although the presence of CMV within malignant gliomas has been confirmed by several laboratories, its relevance as an immunologic target in GBM has yet to be established. The objective of this study was to explore whether T cells stimulated by CMV pp65 RNA-transfected dendritic cells (DC) target and eliminate autologous GBM tumor cells in an antigen-specific manner.T cells from patients with GBM were stimulated with autologous DCs pulsed with CMV pp65 RNA, and the function of the effector CMV pp65-specific T cells was measured.In this study, we demonstrate the ability to elicit CMV pp65-specific immune responses in vitro using RNA-pulsed autologous DCs generated from patients with newly diagnosed GBM. Importantly, CMV pp65-specific T cells lyse autologous, primary GBM tumor cells in an antigen-specific manner. Moreover, T cells expanded in vitro using DCs pulsed with total tumor RNA demonstrated a 10- to 20-fold expansion of CMV pp65-specific T cells as assessed by tetramer analysis and recognition and killing of CMV pp65-expressing target cells.These data collectively demonstrate that CMV-specific T cells can effectively target glioblastoma tumor cells for immunologic killing and support the rationale for the development of CMV-directed immunotherapy in patients with GBM.
Project description:Human adult mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) are under active investigation as cellular carriers for gene therapy. hMSCs possess natural tropism toward tumours; however, the targeting of hMSCs to specific cell populations within tumours is unexplored. In the case of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), at least half of the tumours express EGFRvIII on the cell surface, an ideal target for antibody-mediated gene/drug delivery. In this study, we investigated the feasibility of genetically modifying hMSCs to express a single-chain antibody (scFv) to EGFRvIII on their surfaces. Nucleofection was used to transfect hMSCs with cDNA encoding scFv EGFRvIII fused with PDGFR or human B7-1 transmembrane domains. The expression of scFv EGFRvIII on the cell surface was assessed by FACS. A stable population of scFv EGFRvIII-expressing hMSCs was selected, based on antibiotic resistance, and enriched using FACS. We found that nucleofection allows the efficient expression of scFv EGFRvIII on the cell surface of hMSCs. hMSCs transfected with the construct encoding scFv EGFRvIII as a fusion with PDGFRtm showed scFv EGFRvIII expression in up to 86% of cells. Most importantly, human MSCs expressing scFv against EGFRvIII demonstrated enhanced binding to U87-EGFRvIII cells in vitro and significantly increased retention in human U87-EGFRvIII-expressing tumours in vivo. In summary, we provide the first conclusive evidence of genetic modification of hMSCs with a single-chain antibody against an antigen expressed on the surface of tumour cells, thereby opening up a new venue for enhanced delivery of gene therapy applications in the context of malignant brain cancer.
Project description:Radioresistance remains a major challenge in the treatment of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). Recent data strongly suggests the important role of miRNAs in cancer progression and therapeutic response. Here, we have established a radioresistant human GBM cell line U87R derived from parental U87 and found miR-135b expression was upregulated in U87R cells. miR-135b knockdown reversed radioresistance of U87R cells, and miR-135b overexpression enhanced radioresistance of U87 cells. Mechanically, bioinformatics analysis combined with experimental analysis demonstrated GSK3? (Glycogen synthase kinase 3 beta) was a novel direct target of miR-135b. Moreover, GSK3? protein expression was downregulated in U87R cells and restored expression of GSK3? increased radiosensitivity of U87R cells. In addition, clinical data indicated that the expression of miR-135b or GSK3? was significantly association with IR resistance of GBM samples. Our findings suggest miR-135b is involved in the radioresistance of human GBM cells and miR-135b-GSK3? axis may be a novel candidate for developing rational therapeutic strategies for human GBM treatment.
Project description:Glioblastoma (GBM) is a highly heterogeneous type of tumor characterized by genomic and signaling abnormalities affecting pathways involved in control of cell fate, including tumor-suppressor- and growth factor-regulated pathways. An aberrant miRNA expression has been observed in GBM, being associated with impaired cellular functions resulting in malignant transformation, proliferation and invasion. Here, we demonstrate for the first time that platelet-derived growth factor-B (PDGF-B), a potent angiogenic growth factor involved in GBM development and progression, promotes downregulation of pro-oncogenic (miR-21) and anti-oncogenic (miR-128) miRNAs, as well as upregulation/downregulation of several miRNAs involved in GBM pathology. Retrovirally mediated overexpression of PDGF-B in U87 human GBM cells or their prolonged exposure, as well as that of F98 rat glioma cells to this ligand, resulted in decreased miR-21 and miR-128 levels, which was associated with increased cell proliferation. Furthermore, siRNA-mediated PDGF-B silencing led to increased levels of miR-21 and miR-128, while miRNA modulation through overexpression of miR-21 did not alter the levels of PDGF-B. Finally, we demonstrate that modulation of tumor suppressors PTEN and p53 in U87 cells does not affect the decrease in miR-21 levels associated with PDGF-B overexpression. Overall, our findings suggest that, besides its role in inducing GBM tumorigenesis, PDGF-B may enhance tumor proliferation by modulating the expression of oncomiRs and tumor suppressor miRNAs in U87 human GBM cells.