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      The combination of anti-KIR monoclonal antibodies with anti-PD-1/PD-L1 monoclonal antibodies could be a critical breakthrough in overcoming tumor immune escape in NSCLC

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          Abstract

          Background

          The anti-programmed death-1 (PD-1)/programmed death ligand-1 (PD-L1) monoclonal antibody has a good effect in the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), but not all PD-1/PD-L1 positive patients can get benefit from it. Compensatory expression of other immune checkpoints may be correlated with the poor efficacy of anti-PD-1/PD-L1 monoclonal antibodies. The inhibitory human leukocyte antigen (HLA)/killer cell Ig-like receptor (KIR) can effectively block the killing effect of natural killer (NK) cells on tumors. Our previous studies have confirmed that high expression of KIR was correlated with poor prognosis of NSCLC. Inhibitory KIR expression was positively correlated with the expression of PD-1.

          Methods

          The expressions of KIR 2D (L1, L3, L4, S4) (BC032422/ADQ31987/NP_002246/NP_036446, Abcam) and PD-1 (NAT 105, Cell marque) proteins was assessed by immunohistochemistry.

          Results

          The expression of inhibitory KIR in tumor cells or tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) is associated with PD-1 expression. Among PD-1 positive patients, 76.3% were KIR 2D (L1, L3, L4, S4) positive on tumor cells, and 74.6% were KIR 2D (L1, L3, L4, S4) positive on TILs. We compared the expression of inhibitory KIR before and after treatment with nivolumab in 11 patients with NSCLC. We found that five (45.5%) patients had positive expression of inhibitory KIR in tumor tissue after being treated with anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibodies, two of whom exhibited a significant increase in expression of inhibitory KIR, and three showed no change.

          Conclusions

          PD-1 expression was correlated with KIR 2D (L1, L3, L4, S4) on tumor cells or TILs. The resistance to anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody treatment might be related to KIR. The inhibitory HLA/KIR could combine with the PD-1/PD-L1 signaling pathway negatively regulating NSCLC tumor immunity.

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          Most cited references 19

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          Adaptive resistance to therapeutic PD-1 blockade is associated with upregulation of alternative immune checkpoints

          Despite compelling antitumour activity of antibodies targeting the programmed death 1 (PD-1): programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1) immune checkpoint in lung cancer, resistance to these therapies has increasingly been observed. In this study, to elucidate mechanisms of adaptive resistance, we analyse the tumour immune microenvironment in the context of anti-PD-1 therapy in two fully immunocompetent mouse models of lung adenocarcinoma. In tumours progressing following response to anti-PD-1 therapy, we observe upregulation of alternative immune checkpoints, notably T-cell immunoglobulin mucin-3 (TIM-3), in PD-1 antibody bound T cells and demonstrate a survival advantage with addition of a TIM-3 blocking antibody following failure of PD-1 blockade. Two patients who developed adaptive resistance to anti-PD-1 treatment also show a similar TIM-3 upregulation in blocking antibody-bound T cells at treatment failure. These data suggest that upregulation of TIM-3 and other immune checkpoints may be targetable biomarkers associated with adaptive resistance to PD-1 blockade.
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            IFN-γ from lymphocytes induces PD-L1 expression and promotes progression of ovarian cancer

            Background: PD-L1 (programmed cell death 1 ligand 1) on tumour cells suppresses host immunity through binding to its receptor PD-1 on lymphocytes, and promotes peritoneal dissemination in mouse models of ovarian cancer. However, how PD-L1 expression is regulated in ovarian cancer microenvironment remains unclear. Methods: The number of CD8-positive lymphocytes and PD-L1 expression in tumour cells was assessed in ovarian cancer clinical samples. PD-L1 expression and tumour progression in mouse models under conditions of altering IFN-γ signals was assessed. Results: The number of CD8-positive cells in cancer stroma was very high in peritoneally disseminated tumours, and was strongly correlated to PD-L1 expression on the tumour cells (P<0.001). In mouse models, depleting IFNGR1 (interferon-γ receptor 1) resulted in lower level of PD-L1 expression in tumour cells, increased the number of tumour-infiltrating CD8-positive lymphocytes, inhibition of peritoneal disseminated tumour growth and longer survival (P=0.02). The injection of IFN-γ into subcutaneous tumours induced PD-L1 expression and promoted tumour growth, and PD-L1 depletion completely abrogated tumour growth caused by IFN-γ injection (P=0.01). Conclusions: Interferon-γ secreted by CD8-positive lymphocytes upregulates PD-L1 on ovarian cancer cells and promotes tumour growth. The lymphocyte infiltration and the IFN-γ status may be the key to effective anti-PD-1 or anti-PD-L1 therapy in ovarian cancer.
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              Plasma cells from multiple myeloma patients express B7-H1 (PD-L1) and increase expression after stimulation with IFN-{gamma} and TLR ligands via a MyD88-, TRAF6-, and MEK-dependent pathway.

              Multiple myeloma (MM) cells inhibit certain T-cell functions. We examined the expression of B7-H1 (PD-L1), a B7-related protein that inhibits T-cell responses, in CD138-purified plasma cells isolated from MM patients, monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance patients, and healthy donors. We observed that B7-H1 was expressed in most MM plasma cells, but not cells isolated from monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance or healthy donors. This expression was increased or induced by IFN-gamma and Toll-like receptor (TLR) ligands in isolated MM plasma cells. Blocking the MEK/ERK pathway inhibited IFN-gamma-mediated and TLR-mediated expression of B7-H1. Inhibition of the MyD88 and TRAF6 adaptor proteins of the TLR pathway blocked not only B7-H1 expression induced by TLR ligands but also that mediated by IFN-gamma. IFN-gamma-induced STAT1 activation, via MEK/ERK and MyD88/TRAF6, and inhibition of STAT1 reduced B7-H1 expression. MM plasma cells stimulated with IFN-gamma or TLR ligands inhibited cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) generation and this immunosuppressive effect was inhibited by preincubation with an anti-B7-H1 antibody, the UO126 MEK inhibitor, or by transfection of a dominant-negative mutant of MyD88. Thus, B7-H1 expression by MM cells represents a possible immune escape mechanism that could be targeted therapeutically through inhibition of MyD88/TRAF6 and MEK/ERK/STAT1.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Drug Des Devel Ther
                Drug Des Devel Ther
                Drug Design, Development and Therapy
                Drug Design, Development and Therapy
                Dove Medical Press
                1177-8881
                2018
                24 April 2018
                : 12
                : 981-986
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Department of Medical Oncology, Shanghai Pulmonary Hospital, Tongji University Medical School Cancer Institute, Tongji University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China
                [2 ]Division of Medical Oncology, Department of Medicine, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, CO, USA
                [3 ]Oncology Department, Moinhos de Vento Hospital, Porto Alegre, Brazil
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Caicun Zhou, Department of Medical Oncology, Shanghai Pulmonary Hospital, Number 507 Zhengmin Road, Shanghai 200437, China, Tel +86 6511 5006 3050, Email caicunzhoudr@ 123456163.com
                [*]

                These authors contributed equally to this work

                Article
                dddt-12-981
                10.2147/DDDT.S163304
                5923225
                © 2018 He et al. This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited

                The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/). By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed.

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