Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy

, Volume 60, Issue 5, pp 609–619

The absence of B lymphocytes reduces the number and function of T-regulatory cells and enhances the anti-tumor response in a murine tumor model

  • Tamar Tadmor
  • Yu Zhang
  • Hyun-Mi Cho
  • Eckhard R. Podack
  • Joseph D. Rosenblatt
Original Article


Increasing evidence suggests that B lymphocytes play a central role in inhibiting the immune response against certain tumors, but the underlying mechanisms by which B cells facilitate tumor growth are still poorly understood. In this study, we investigated how the presence or absence of B cells affects expansion and function of T-regulatory cells (‘T-regs’) in a murine breast tumor model (EMT-6). We compared tumor growth, and the number and function of T-reg cells in wild-type immune-competent mice (ICM) and B-cell-deficient mice (BCDM). Mice were either tumor-naive or implanted with EMT-6 mammary adenocarcinoma cells. Tumor growth was markedly inhibited in BCDM, compared to wild-type mice (ICM). Increased T-reg expansion as defined by CD4+/CD25+/FOXP3+ cells was evident following EMT-6 inoculation in ICM in comparison with non-tumor-bearing mice or compared to BCDM in which tumor had been implanted. The percentage and absolute number of T-regs in the spleen, tumor draining lymph nodes, and tumor bed were significantly reduced in BCDM compared to ICM. T-reg function, measured by suppression and proliferation assays, was also reduced in tumor inoculated BCDM compared to ICM. Our studies indicate that absence of B cells may play a role in augmenting the T-cell anti-tumor response, in part due to effects on T-regulatory cell expansion and function.


B-cell-deficient mice (BCDM) Immune-competent mice (ICM) T-regulatory cells (T-reg) Anti-tumor immunity B lymphocyte 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tamar Tadmor
    • 1
  • Yu Zhang
    • 3
  • Hyun-Mi Cho
    • 3
  • Eckhard R. Podack
    • 2
  • Joseph D. Rosenblatt
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Haematology UnitBnai Zion Medical CenterHaifaIsrael
  2. 2.Department of Microbiology and ImmunologyUniversity of Miami Miller School of MedicineMiamiUSA
  3. 3.Division of Hematology/OncologyUniversity of Miami Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer CenterMiamiUSA

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