Adjuvant adoptive immunotherapy with tumour-infiltrating lymphocytes and modulated doses of interleukin-2 in 22 patients with melanoma, colorectal and renal cancer, after radical metastasectomy, and in 12 advanced patients
- Cite this article as:
- Ridolfi, R., Flamini, E., Riccobon, A. et al. Cancer Immunol Immunother (1998) 46: 185. doi:10.1007/s002620050477
- 41 Downloads
Adoptive tumour infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) in combination with a modulated dosage of interleukin-2 (IL-2) can be used with acceptable toxicity in the treatment of immunogenic tumours. Following an experience of reinfusion in advanced melanoma, colorectal and renal cancer patients, treatment was given to disease-free patients after metastasectomy. The high risk of relapse and favourable ratio between reinfused TIL and possible microscopic residual disease determined this choice of adjuvant treatment. A group of 12 patients with advanced disease (7 melanoma, 4 colorectal carcinoma, 1 kidney carcinoma) were treated with TIL (median 5.8×1010 cells) and IL-2 (West’s schedule) modulated towards a lower dosage (from 12 to 6 MIU/day) in order to maintain an acceptable level of toxicity. As treatment was well tolerated, it was offered to another 22 patients in an adjuvant setting after metastasectomy (11 melanoma, 10 colorectal carcinoma, 1 renal cancer), the median dose of TIL reinfused being 4.95×1010 cells. No objective response was observed in advanced patients: all patients progressed after a median of 1.5 months (0–8 months) and median survival was 8 months (3–22+ months). Thirteen patients from the second group are still disease-free after a median of 23+ months (9+–47+ months). The remaining 9 patients relapsed after a median of 5 months (3–18 months). Toxicity was moderate as clinical and hepatic/renal function parameters were used to assess the need for dose reductions. Consequently, there was great diversity in IL-2 dosages administered. In particular, there seemed to be a difference in IL-2 doses administered between disease-free cases and those who progressed (17.5 MIU/day versus 7 MIU/day in melanoma patients; 11.2 MIU/day versus 7.1 MIU/day in colorectal cancer patients). By contrast, no differences were observed between number of TIL reinfused and clinical response. Phenotypical characteristics of reinfused TIL were similar to those reported in the literature: 97% were CD3 and 92% were CD8. Aspecific cytolytic activity was evaluated on 12 cases whereas, in 2 melanoma cases, autologous tumour tissue was available for the specific cytotoxicity test. Perforin levels in TIL measured at the end of culture were generally high or very high. Cytokine levels were measured on the supernatant at the end of culture, with an estreme variability in results. Finally, ζ chain and p56lck were histologically assessed on the resected tissue from which TIL were cultivated. There were virtually none of the former and a complete absence of the latter, which concurs with data reported in the literature. The same immunocytochemical analysis was carried out on TIL at the end of culture. This time an almost complete restoration of both functions was seen, especially in melanoma patients, who are still free from disease. The study is on-going and it has been decided to focus on disease-free patients after metastasectomy in order to increase the number and possibility of clinical and histological correlations.