Heat shock proteins (hsp) 96 play an essential role in protein metabolism and exert stimulatory activities on innate and adaptive immunity. Vaccination with tumor-derived hsp96 induces CD8+ T cell-mediated tumor regressions in different animal models. In this study, we show that hsp96 purified from human melanoma or colon carcinoma activate tumor- and Ag-specific T cells in vitro and expand them in vivo. HLA-A*0201-restricted CD8 + T cells recognizing Ags expressed in human melanoma (melanoma Ag recognized by T cell-1 (MART-1)/melanoma Ag A (Melan-A)) or colon carcinoma (carcinoembryonic Ag (CEA)/epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM)) were triggered to release IFN-γ and to mediate cytotoxic activity by HLA-A*0201-matched APCs pulsed with hsp96 purified from tumor cells expressing the relevant Ag. Such activation occurred in class I HLA-restricted fashion and appeared to be significantly higher than that achieved by direct peptide loading. Immunization with autologous tumor-derived hsp96 induced a significant increase in the recognition of MART-1/Melan-A27-35 in three of five HLA-A*0201 melanoma patients, and of CEA571-579 and EpCAM263-271 in two of five HLA-A*0201 colon carcinoma patients, respectively, as detected by ELISPOT and HLA/tetramer staining. These increments in Ag-specific T cell responses were associated with a favorable disease course after hsp96 vaccination. Altogether, these data provide evidence that hsp96 derived from human tumors can present antigenic peptides to CD8 + T cells and activate them both in vitro and in vivo, thus representing an important tool for vaccination in cancer patients.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|Publication status||Published - Oct 1 2003|
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