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J Immunother. 2000 Jan;23(1):168-76.

Dendritic cells loaded with MART-1 peptide or infected with adenoviral construct are functionally equivalent in the induction of tumor-specific cytotoxic T lymphocyte responses in patients with melanoma.

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RPR Gencell, Hayward, California, USA.


Immunization with tumor-specific-associated antigen--pulsed dendritic cells has proved to be efficacious in various animal models and is being evaluated for the treatment of cancer in humans. Use of dendritic cells pulsed with specific peptides or transfected with tumor-associated antigen genes has been a focused area of investigation for inducing potent tumor and viral immune responses. In this study, the authors demonstrate transgene expression, including the lacZ and MART-1 genes, in dendritic cells infected with adenoviral constructs. These transiently transduced dendritic cells, derived from melanoma patients' monocytes cultured with granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor and interleukin-4, express the transgene and can stimulate patients' CD8+ T cells to elicit an antitumor immune response comparable to dendritic cells loaded with a defined peptide. These cytotoxic T lymphocytes were able to recognize both known and unknown tumor-associated antigen epitopes and exhibited cytolytic activity against HLA-matched tumor cells expressing the antigen. The ability to induce tumor-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes in vitro using gene-modified dendritic cells that transiently express tumor-associated antigens demonstrates the potential use of these antigen-presenting cells for developing in vivo cancer vaccines.

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