Cutting edge: rapid cloning of tumor-specific CTL suitable for adoptive immunotherapy of melanoma.
Dunbar PR., Chen JL., Chao D., Rust N., Teisserenc H., Ogg GS., Romero P., Weynants P., Cerundolo V.
Adoptive immunotherapy using CTL has provided some clinical benefit to patients with metastatic melanoma. Use of cloned CTL of known specificity might improve clinical effect, but technical difficulties have limited exploration of this possibility. We have used fluorescence-driven cell sorting to clone tumor-specific CTL after staining with tetrameric MHC class I/peptide complexes. CTL specific for the melanoma Ags melan-A, tyrosinase, and MAGE3 were cloned from the peripheral blood, tumor-infiltrated lymph nodes, and skin metastases of five patients. Clones were isolated and characterized in as little as 6 weeks, much faster than is possible with previous techniques. We show that these CTL clones express markers compatible with immunotherapeutic use in melanoma, including the cutaneous lymphocyte Ag, which is associated with homing to skin.