Combination of p53-DC vaccine and rAd-p53 gene therapy induced CTLs cytotoxic against p53-deleted human prostate cancer cells in vitro

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Recently, the US FDA approved sipuleucel-T, which is composed of autologous DCs stimulated with a recombinant fusion protein of prostatic acid phosphatase (PAP) and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), as the first immunotherapeutic agent for metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC). However, sipuleucel-T demonstrated only modest efficacy in mCPRC patients. Researchers are now investigating the potential of p53 protein as a tumor-associated antigen (TAA) loaded in DC-based cancer vaccine. Approximately half of all tumors overexpress p53, and up to 20% of prostate cancer cells overexpresses p53. In this study, we evaluated the feasibility of combining p53-DC vaccine and rAd-p53 gene therapy, using the p53-overexpressing and non-expressing prostate cancer cells in vitro. We successfully generated the p53-DC vaccine by culturing autologous DCs infected with rAd-p53. This p53-DC vaccine can differentiate CTLs specifically cytotoxic to p53-overexpressing prostate cancer cells. In addition, rAd-p53 infection can induce overexpression of p53 and thus the cytotoxicity of CTLs differentiated by the p53-DC vaccine in p53 non-expressing prostate cancer cells. These findings suggest that this combination therapy using p53-DC vaccine and rAd-p53 gene therapy together may represent a new paradigm for the treatment of mCRPC.

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This work was partially supported by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) KAKENHI Grant Number 26461503.The materials including rAd-p53, rAd-LacZ, p53-DCs, and LacZ-DCs, were constructed only for this study, and were not commercially available.

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Correspondence to T Shirakawa.

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Saito, H., Kitagawa, K., Yoneda, T. et al. Combination of p53-DC vaccine and rAd-p53 gene therapy induced CTLs cytotoxic against p53-deleted human prostate cancer cells in vitro. Cancer Gene Ther 24, 289–296 (2017) doi:10.1038/cgt.2017.21

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