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Br J Haematol. 2007 Nov;139(3):415-24.

Phase I/II clinical trial of sequential subcutaneous and intravenous delivery of dendritic cell vaccination for refractory multiple myeloma using patient-specific tumour idiotype protein or idiotype (VDJ)-derived class I-restricted peptides.

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Institute of Haematology and Medical Oncology 'L. & A. Seràgnoli', University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy.


Fifteen multiple myeloma (MM) patients who had failed maintenance therapy after tandem autologous stem cell transplantation underwent anti-idiotype (Id) vaccination with dendritic cells (DCs). CD14(+)-derived DCs were loaded with the autologous Id as whole protein (=6) or Id-derived class I-restricted peptides (=9) and keyhole limpet hemocyanin (KLH). Vaccination consisted of three subcutaneous (sc) and two intravenous injections of increasing DC doses at 2 weeks interval. DC therapy was well tolerated. Most patients developed both humoral and T-cell responses to KLH, suggesting immunocompetence. Eight of 15 patients developed an Id-specific T-cell proliferative response, 8/15 increased interferon-gamma-secreting T cells and 4/15 showed an Id-positive delayed-type hypersensitivity test. Anti-Id cytotoxic T-lymphocyte precursors increased after DC vaccination in 2/2 evaluable patients. A more robust T-cell response was observed after sc DC injections and increased Id-specific T-cell proliferation was found up to 1 year after vaccination. VDJ-derived peptides were as effective as the whole protein in stimulating T-cell responses. Clinically, 7/15 patients have stable disease after a median follow-up of 26 months, one patient achieved durable partial remission after 40 months, and seven patients progressed. In conclusion, sc injections of cryopreserved Id-pulsed DCs were safe and, in contrast with intravenous administrations, induced anti-MM T-cell responses.

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