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  • 1
    Keywords: cytokines ; IMMUNOTHERAPY ; vaccination ; tumor immunology ; tumor microenvironment ; IHC ; neoantigens ; neo-epitopes
    Abstract: Neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) of the gastrointestinal tract are a rare and heterogeneous group of neoplasms with unique tumor biology and clinical management issues. While surgery is the only curative treatment option in patients with early stage NETs, the optimal management strategy for patients with advanced metastatic NETs is unknown. Based on the tremendous success of immunotherapeutic approaches, we sought to investigate such approaches in a case of metastatic rectal NET. Here, we apply an integrative approach using various computational and experimental methods to explore several aspects of the tumor-host immune interactions for immunotherapeutic options. Sequencing of six different liver metastases revealed a quite homogenous set of mutations, and further analysis of these mutations for immunogenicity revealed few neo-epitopes with pre-existing T cell reactivity, which can be used in therapeutic vaccines. Staining for immunomodulatory proteins and cytokine profiling showed that the immune setting is surprisingly different, when compared to liver metastases of colorectal cancer for instance. Taken together, our results highlight the broad range and complexity of tumor-host immune interaction and underline the value of an integrative approach.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 27999735
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  • 2
    Keywords: CANCER ; CELLS ; EXPRESSION ; carcinoma ; liver ; TISSUE ; ACCUMULATION ; IFN-GAMMA ; T-CELLS ; cytokines ; DESIGN ; colorectal cancer ; COLORECTAL-CANCER ; LYMPHOCYTES ; HLA CLASS-I ; NK cells ; RECRUITMENT ; PROGNOSTIC-SIGNIFICANCE ; microenvironment ; tumor microenvironment ; CLASS-I EXPRESSION ; MUCOSAL IMMUNITY
    Abstract: Purpose: Tumor infiltrating T lymphocytes in colorectal cancer (CRC) have prognostic impact, but the role of natural killer (NK) cells in CRC tissue is unclear. The contribution of intratumoral cytokines and chemokines in shaping the composition of the inflammatory lymphocytic infiltrate is also unclear. Experimental Design: In this study, localization and densities of NK and T cells within primary CRC, CRC liver metastases, adenomas, and normal tissues were analyzed on whole tissue sections from 112 patients. In a subset of these patients, the most important 50 cytokines and chemokines were quantified in paired serum, primary CRC and adjacent mucosa samples and in CRC liver metastases and correlated with NK and T-cell infiltration, respectively. Results: The various compartments displayed characteristic differences like significantly higher chemokine concentrations in CRC tissue. Most importantly, despite high local chemokine levels, NK cells were generally scarce within CRC tumor tissues, independent of human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I expression. Adjacent normal mucosa contained normal levels of NK cells. In contrast, corresponding T-cell numbers varied substantially and were positively correlated with higher chemokine levels. Conclusions: Our findings indicate a distinct regulation of NK cells versus T cells in the CRC tumor microenvironment. NK-cell migration into CRC tumor tissue is obviously impaired early during tumor development by mechanisms that do not affect T-cell infiltration.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 21325295
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