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Blood. 2008 Feb 15;111(4):2152-4. Epub 2007 Nov 28.

Levo- but not dextro-1-methyl tryptophan abrogates the IDO activity of human dendritic cells.

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  • 1Department of General, Visceral and Transplant Surgery, University Hospital of Tubingen, Tubingen, Germany.


Clinical trials have been started with the aim of inducing tumor immunity by blocking the immunosuppressive action of indoleamine-2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) with the IDO2-inhibitor dextro-1-methyl-tryptophan (D-1MT). Here we show that human dendritic cells (DCs) express both IDO-1 and IDO-2, but that only IDO1 mediates tryptophan catabolism; furthermore, its activity is blocked by levo-1MT, whereas D-1MT is inefficient. Consequently, in humans any possible antitumor effects of D-1MT cannot be attributed to abrogation of IDO activity in DCs as described in this study.

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