Allogeneic tumor cell line-based vaccines: A good alternative to autologous and cancer stem cell vaccines in colorectal cancer

Document Type : Original Article


1 Medical Genetics Research Center, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

2 Department of Pharmacodynamics and Toxicology, School of Pharmacy, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

3 Department of Biology, Damghan branch, Islamic Azad University, Damghan, Iran

4 Surgical Oncology Research Center, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

5 Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

6 Department of Laboratory Sciences, School of Paramedical Sciences, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

7 Immunology Research Center, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran


Objective(s): Besides the uncertainty about colorectal cancer stem cell (CCSC) markers, isolating, purifying, and enriching CCSCs to produce CCSC vaccines is highly challenging. However, allogeneic vaccines developed from CRC cell lines can provide universal, comprehensive, inexpensive, simple, and fast approach to cancer treatment.
Materials and Methods: CCSCs were isolated from human CRC tissue using the in vitro sphere formation assay and then characterized through gene expression analysis, in vivo and in vitro tumor formation assay, karyotyping, and surface marker detection. Subsequently, CCSCs and two CRC cell lines (HT-29 and SW-480) were inactivated with cisplatin (CDDP) and administrated as vaccines to the three groups of athymic C57BL/6 nude mice. Afterward, tumorigenesis was challenged with HT-29 cells. The antitumor effect of vaccines was evaluated by tumor and spleen examination and immune response analysis. The cytotoxic activity of splenocytes and serum levels of TGF-β and IFN-γ were measured by Calcein-AM cytotoxicity assay and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), respectively.
Results: The results of gene expression analysis showed that CCSCs are CD44+CD133-LGR5-. All vaccinations resulted in decreased tumor growth, spleen enlargement, enhanced serum level of IFN-γ and TGF-β, and increased cytotoxic activity of natural killer (NK) cells. The antitumor efficacy of the CCSC vaccine was not more than CRC cell line-based vaccines. Interestingly, the allogeneic SW-480 vaccine could effectively inhibit tumorigenesis.
Conclusion: Despite the great challenge in developing CCSC vaccines, allogeneic vaccines based on CRC cell lines can efficiently induce antitumor immunity in CRC.


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