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PLoS One. 2011 Apr 20;6(4):e18833. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0018833.

TLR2-dependent induction of IL-10 and Foxp3+ CD25+ CD4+ regulatory T cells prevents effective anti-tumor immunity induced by Pam2 lipopeptides in vivo.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Graduate School of Medicine, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan.


16 S-[2,3-bis(palmitoyl)propyl]cysteine (Pam2) lipopeptides act as toll-like receptor (TLR)2/6 ligands and activate natural killer (NK) cells and dendritic cells (DCs) to produce inflammatory cytokines and cytotoxic NK activity in vitro. However, in this study, we found that systemic injection of Pam2 lipopeptides was not effective for the suppression of NK-sensitive B16 melanomas in vivo. When we investigated the immune suppressive mechanisms, systemic injection of Pam2 lipopeptides induced IL-10 in a TLR2-dependent manner. The Pam2 lipopeptides increased the frequencies of Foxp3(+)CD4(+) regulatory T (T reg) cells in a TLR2- and IL-10- dependent manner. The T reg cells from Pam2-lipopeptide injected mice maintained suppressor activity. Pam2 lipopeptides, plus the depletion of T reg with an anti-CD25 monoclonal antibody, improved tumor growth compared with Pam2 lipopeptides alone. In conclusion, our data suggested that systemic treatment of Pam2 lipopeptides promoted IL-10 production and T reg function, which suppressed the effective induction of anti-tumor immunity in vivo. It is necessary to develop an adjuvant that does not promote IL-10 and T reg function in vivo for the future establishment of an anti-cancer vaccine.

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