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The roles of stem cell memory T cells in hematological malignancies

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      Abstract

      Adoptive cell therapy (ACT) is rapidly migrating from bench to clinical therapy for hematological malignancies. Recently, a new subtype of memory T cells, stem cell memory T (TSCM) cells, was shown to be one of the most favorable subsets for ACT. TSCM has high self-renewal capacity and is associated with superior T cell engraftment, persistence, and antitumor immunity. In this review, we focused on the characteristics of antigen-specific TSCM cells and discussed their potential for immunotherapy targeting hematological malignancies.

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      Most cited references 46

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      A human memory T-cell subset with stem cell-like properties

      Immunological memory is thought to depend upon a stem cell-like, self-renewing population of lymphocytes capable of differentiating into effector cells in response to antigen re-exposure. Here we describe a long-lived human memory T-cell population that displays enhanced self-renewal and multipotent capacity to derive central memory, effector memory and effector T cells. These cells, specific for multiple viral and self-tumor antigens, were found within a CD45RO−, CCR7+, CD45RA+, CD62L+, CD27+, CD28+ and IL-7Rα+ T-cell compartment characteristic of naïve T cells. However, they expressed increased levels of CD95, IL-2Rβ, CXCR3, and LFA-1, and exhibited numerous functional attributes distinctive of memory cells. Compared to known memory populations, these lymphocytes displayed increased proliferative capacity, more efficiently reconstituted immunodeficient hosts and mediated superior anti-tumor responses in a humanized mouse model. The identification of a human stem cell-like memory T-cell population is of direct relevance to the design of vaccines and T-cell therapies.
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        Tumour antigens recognized by T lymphocytes: at the core of cancer immunotherapy.

        In this Timeline, we describe the characteristics of tumour antigens that are recognized by spontaneous T cell responses in cancer patients and the paths that led to their identification. We explain on what genetic basis most, but not all, of these antigens are tumour specific: that is, present on tumour cells but not on normal cells. We also discuss how strategies that target these tumour-specific antigens can lead either to tumour-specific or to crossreactive T cell responses, which is an issue that has important safety implications in immunotherapy. These safety issues are even more of a concern for strategies targeting antigens that are not known to induce spontaneous T cell responses in patients.
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          Wnt signaling arrests effector T cell differentiation and generates CD8+ memory stem cells

          Self-renewing cell populations such as hematopoietic stem cells and memory B and T lymphocytes might be regulated by shared signaling pathways1. Wnt/β-catenin is an evolutionarily conserved pathway that promotes hematopoietic stem cell self-renewal and multipotency by limiting stem cell proliferation and differentiation2,3, but its role in the generation and maintenance of memory T cells is unknown. We found that the induction of Wnt/β-catenin signaling using inhibitors of glycogen-sythase-kinase-3β or the Wnt protein family member, Wnt3a, arrested CD8+ T cell development into effector cells. By blocking T-cell differentiation, Wnt signaling enabled the generation of CD44low, CD62Lhigh, Sca-1high, CD122high, Bcl-2high self-renewing, multipotent CD8+ memory stem cells with proliferative and anti-tumor capacities exceeding those of central and effector memory T cell subsets. These findings reveal a key role for Wnt signaling in the maintenance of stemness in mature memory CD8+ T cells and have important implications for the design of novel vaccination strategies and adoptive immunotherapies.
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            Author and article information

            Affiliations
            [ ]Department of Hematology, First Affiliated Hospital, Jinan University, Guangzhou, 510632 China
            [ ]Institute of Hematology, Jinan University, Guangzhou, 510632 China
            [ ]Key Laboratory for Regenerative Medicine of Ministry of Education, Jinan University, Guangzhou, 510632 China
            Contributors
            lingxu114@163.com
            jnuyikai@163.com
            jdluogx@163.com
            yangqiuli@hotmail.com
            Journal
            J Hematol Oncol
            J Hematol Oncol
            Journal of Hematology & Oncology
            BioMed Central (London )
            1756-8722
            14 October 2015
            14 October 2015
            2015
            : 8
            4605076
            214
            10.1186/s13045-015-0214-5
            © Xu et al. 2015

            Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

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