Like human gliomas, the rat 9L gliosarcoma secretes the immunosuppressive transforming growth factor beta (TGF-beta). Using the 9L model, we tested our hypothesis that genetic modification of glioma cells to block TGF-beta expression may enhance their immunogenicity and make them more suitable for active tumor immunotherapy. Subcutaneous immunizations of tumor-bearing animals with 9L cells genetically modified to inhibit TGF-beta expression with an antisense plasmid vector resulted in a significantly higher number of animals surviving for 12 weeks (11/11, 100%) compared to immunizations with control vector-modified 9L cells (2/15, 13%) or 9L cells transduced with an interleukin 2 retroviral vector (3/10, 30%) (P < 0.001 for both comparisons). Histologic evaluation of implantation sites 12 weeks after treatment revealed no evidence of residual tumor. In vitro tumor cytotoxicity assays with lymph node effector cells revealed a 3- to 4-fold increase in lytic activity for the animals immunized with TGF-beta antisense-modified tumor cells compared to immunizations with control vector or interleukin 2 gene-modified tumor cells. These results indicate that inhibition of TGF-beta expression significantly enhances tumor-cell immunogenicity and supports future clinical evaluation of TGF-beta antisense gene therapy for TGF-beta-expressing tumors.
View details for Web of Science ID A1996UD37500054
View details for PubMedID 8610141