Studies of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes from a human choroidal melanoma.
Cell suspensions prepared enzymatically from an ocular choroidal melanoma were cultured in vitro in an effort to generate (1) melanoma tumor cell lines and (2) tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes cytotoxic for ocular melanoma cells. Even though histologic study of the tumor did not show "significant" infiltrating bone marrow-derived cells, lymphocytes were generated readily in cultures to which interleukin-2 was added. Phenotypic analysis of the cultured lymphocytes indicated that T-cells, natural killer (NK) cells, and lymphokine-activated killer (LAK) cells were present. Moreover, functional studies of the cultured lymphocytes revealed NK activity, LAK activity, and most importantly, tumor antigen-specific cytotoxic T-cell activity. It was concluded that it is possible to obtain tumor cell lines and tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes from ocular tumors, both of which would be required if cellular immunotherapy of ocular tumors is contemplated. In addition, these results indicate that ocular melanomas can express unique tumor-specific antigens and that the immune system of a patient with such an ocular tumor can perceive these tumor antigens because antigen-specific precursor cytotoxic T-cells were present in the tumor-containing eye at the time of enucleation. The theoretic and therapeutic implications of these findings are discussed.
Ksander, BR; Rubsamen, PE; Olsen, KR; Cousins, SW; Streilein, JW
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