PloS one

Chemotherapy enhances cross-presentation of nuclear tumor antigens.

PMID 25243472


Cross-presentation of tumor antigen is essential for efficient priming of naïve CD8⁺ T lymphocytes and induction of effective anti-tumor immunity. We hypothesized that the subcellular location of a tumor antigen could affect the efficiency of cross-presentation, and hence the outcome of anti-tumor responses to that antigen. We compared cross-presentation of a nominal antigen expressed in the nuclear, secretory, or cytoplasmic compartments of B16 melanoma tumors. All tumors expressed similar levels of the antigen. The antigen was cross-presented from all compartments but when the concentration was low, nuclear antigen was less efficiently cross-presented than antigen from other cellular locations. The efficiency of cross-presentation of the nuclear antigen was improved following chemotherapy-induced tumor cell apoptosis and this correlated with an increase in the proportion of effector CTL. These data demonstrate that chemotherapy improves nuclear tumor antigen cross-presentation and could be important for anti-cancer immunotherapies that target nuclear antigens.