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J Clin Invest. 2005 Dec;115(12):3506-16.

A frameshift polymorphism in P2X5 elicits an allogeneic cytotoxic T lymphocyte response associated with remission of chronic myeloid leukemia.

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Central Hematology Laboratory, Nijmegen Centre for Molecular Life Sciences, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.


Minor histocompatibility antigens (mHAgs) constitute the targets of the graft-versus-leukemia response after HLA-identical allogeneic stem cell transplantation. Here, we have used genetic linkage analysis to identify a novel mHAg, designated lymphoid-restricted histocompatibility antigen-1 (LRH-1), which is encoded by the P2X5 gene and elicited an allogeneic CTL response in a patient with chronic myeloid leukemia after donor lymphocyte infusion. We demonstrate that immunogenicity for LRH-1 is due to differential protein expression in recipient and donor cells as a consequence of a homozygous frameshift polymorphism in the donor. Tetramer analysis showed that emergence of LRH-1-specific CD8+ cytotoxic T cells in peripheral blood and bone marrow correlated with complete remission of chronic myeloid leukemia. Furthermore, the restricted expression of LRH-1 in hematopoietic cells including leukemic CD34+ progenitor cells provides evidence of a role for LRH-1-specific CD8+ cytotoxic T cells in selective graft-versus-leukemia reactivity in the absence of severe graft-versus-host disease. These findings illustrate that the P2X5-encoded mHAg LRH-1 could be an attractive target for specific immunotherapy to treat hematological malignancies recurring after allogeneic stem cell transplantation.

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