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Eur Cytokine Netw. 2003 Oct-Dec;14(4):246-55.

Constitutive expression of TGF-bêta1, interleukin-6 and interleukin-8 by tumor cells as a major component of immune escape in human ovarian carcinoma.

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UPRESA 2261, Faculté des Sciences Biologiques et Médicales de Rennes, France.


Tumors could use several mechanisms to coexist with the host's immune system or to protect themselves from an immune response. Thus, insufficient expression of cell surface molecules on tumor cells, which are important for T cell recognition or activation, could lead to induction of a state of tolerance. Tumor cells could also produce cytokines that would inhibit the immune response and allow tumor progression. Here, we studied, in vitro, the cell surface expression of immunologically important molecules in seven ovarian carcinoma (OVCA) cell lines and the constitutive expression of cytokines. All OVCA cell lines expressed MHC class I molecules, ICAM-1 and LFA-3 adhesion molecules, necessary to induce a specific cytotoxic T-cell response, as well as the CD40 costimulatory molecules. Conversely, the lack of the dominant costimulatory molecules, CD80 (B7.1) and CD86 (B7.2) could be a possible explanation of poor immunogenicity of OVCA tumors. Immunosuppressive TGF-beta1 was detected at the mRNA level in all cell lines but was weakly secreted in supernatants. By contrast, IL-10 was never found. Most of them constitutively produced IL-8 and IL-6, two cytokines known as tumor promoting factors whereas the proinflammatory cytokines TNF-alpha, IL-1beta and GM-CSF were rarely produced. Data from this study could be useful for designing new strategies of immunotherapy to improve immunogenicity and/or limit protumor cytokine production.

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