Cancer immunotherapy is currently one of the leading approaches in cancer treatment. Gene electrotransfer of plasmids encoding interleukin 12 (IL-12) into the cells leads to the production of IL-12, which drives immune cell polarization to an antitumoral response. One of the cell types that shows great promise in targeting tumor cells under the influence of IL-12 cytokine milieu is that of macrophages. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate gene electrotransfer of antibiotic resistance-free plasmid DNA-encoding murine IL-12 (mIL-12) in mice bearing aggressive B16F10 murine melanoma. IL-12 electrotransfer resulted in the complete long-term eradication of the tumors. Serum mIL-12 and murine interferon γ (mIFNγ) were increased after IL-12 gene electrotransfer. Further on, hematoxylin and eosin (HE) staining showed increased infiltration of immune cells that lasted from day 4 until day 14. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) staining of F4/80, MHCII, and CD11c showed higher positive staining in the IL-12 gene electrotransfer group than in the control groups. Immune cell infiltration into the tumors and the high density of MHCII- and CD11c-positive cells suggest an antitumor polarization of macrophages and the presence of antigen-presenting cells that contributes to the important antitumor effectiveness of IL-12.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology