CD40 expressed on human melanoma cells mediates T cell co-stimulation and tumor cell growth

Giuseppe Pirozzi, Vincenza Lombari, Delia Zanzi, Franco Ionna, Maria Luisa Lombardi, Simona Errico, Giuseppina Ruggiero, Ciro Manzo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


CD40 is a 50 kDa molecule, a member of the tumor necrosis factor/nerve growth factor receptor family. It is expressed on B cells, monocytes, dendritic cells and various malignant cells. While the critical relevance of this molecule in T cell-dependent B cell activation is already established, the biological role of CD40-CD154 interaction in non-hematopoietic cells is still unknown, Here we show that CD40 is functionally expressed on human melanoma-derived cell lines. No correlation between surface CD40 expression and the origin of the cell line, primary versus metastatic, was observed. Melanoma cells were shown to be able to co-stimulate TCR-triggered human T cells; moreover, because they do not express CD80 or CD86 co-stimulatory structures, the involvement of additional pathways have to be postulated. We have identified CD40 as one of the molecules involved in melanoma cell-mediated co-stimulation of anti-CD3-triggered human CD4+ T lymphocytes. In addition, a CD40-dependent pathway, able to enhance tumor cell proliferation at low serum concentrations, in vitro, has been shown to be functional in human melanoma cell lines.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)787-795
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Immunology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2000


  • CD40
  • Cell growth
  • Co-stimulation
  • Melanoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


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