Infiltration of a mesothelioma by IFN-gamma-producing cells and tumor rejection after depletion of regulatory T cells

The Journal of Immunology. 2007 Apr 1;178(7):4089-96. [Link]

Rudge G, Barrett SP, Scott B, van Driel IR.

Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Bio21 Molecular Science and Biotechnology Institute, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Australia.


Depletion of CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ regulatory T cells (CD25+ Treg) with an anti-CD25 Ab results in immune-mediated rejection of tolerogenic solid tumors. In this study, we have examined the immune response to a mesothelioma tumor in mice after depletion of CD25+ cells to elucidate the cellular mechanisms of CD25+ Treg, a subject over which there is currently much conjecture. Tumor rejection was found to be primarily due to the action of CD8+ T cells, although CD4+ cells appeared to play some role. Depletion of CD25+ cells resulted in an accumulation in tumor tissue of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells and NK cells that were producing the potent antitumor cytokine IFN-γ. Invasion of tumors by CD8+ T cells was partially dependent on the presence of CD4+ T cells. Although a significant increase
in the proliferation and number of tumor-specific CD8+ T cells was observed in lymph nodes draining the tumor of anti-CD25-treated mice, this effect was relatively modest compared with the large increase in IFN-γ-producing T cells found in tumor tissue, which suggests that the migration of T cells into tumor tissue may also have been altered. Depletion of CD25+ cells did not appear to modulate antitumor CTL activity on a per cell basis. Our data suggests that CD25+ Treg limit the accumulation of activated T cells producing IFN-γ in the tumor tissue and, to a lesser extent, activation and/or rate of mitosis of tumor-specific T cells in lymph nodes.