Flow cytometric analysis of circulating dendritic cell subsets and intracellular cytokine production in advanced breast cancer patients

Silvia Ferrari, Fabio Malugani, Bianca Rovati, Camillo Porta, Alberto Riccardi, Marco Danova

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Patients with advanced cancer are known to have dysfunctions of the immune system. Dendritic cells (DCs) are potent antigen-presenting cells that play a crucial role in antitumor immune response. At least two peripheral blood DC subsets have been described: myeloid-derived CD11c+CD123- DCs (DC1) and lymphoid-derived CDllc- CD123+DCs (DC2). Upon interaction with T cells, DC2 seemed to support the generation of a Th2 response, while DC1 predominantly prime a Th1 response. Our study was aimed at investigating the number of circulating DCs, and their subsets and functions in 32 patients with advanced breast cancer that achieved an objective response after a standard-dose sequential chemotherapy (CT), compared to 40 healthy controls. Circulating DC subsets and intracellular cytokine production in CD4+ and CD8+ subsets were analyzed using a tri-color flow cytometry assay. DC subsets were identified in peripheral blood, calculating their percentage gated as lin- HLA-DR+ and using BDCA-1, BDCA-2 and BDCA-3 specific markers, as DC1 and DC2 according to expression of CDllc and CD123, respectively. Intracellular cytokines were evaluated in CD4+(Th1 and Th2) and CD8+ (Tel and Tc2) T lymphocytes. The mean percentage of BDCA-1 + BDCA-2 + BDCA-3 was similar to that of DC1 + DC2 (p=ns). The mean percentage of DCs and DC1/DC2 ratio were slightly decreased before CT in cancer patients compared with healthy controls (p=ns). After CT, the percentage of DC1 further decreased (p=0.02). The production of IFN-γ (Thl and Tel) significantly decreased (p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-120
Number of pages8
JournalOncology Reports
Volume14
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2005

Keywords

  • Breast cancer
  • Cytokines
  • Dendritic cells
  • Flow cytometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

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