Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy

, Volume 60, Issue 8, pp 1075–1084 | Cite as

Phase I/II study of adoptive transfer of γδ T cells in combination with zoledronic acid and IL-2 to patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma

  • Hirohito KobayashiEmail author
  • Yoshimasa Tanaka
  • Junji Yagi
  • Nagahiro Minato
  • Kazunari Tanabe
Original article


Human Vγ2 Vδ2-bearing T cells have recently received much attention in cancer immunotherapy. In this study, we conducted a phase I/II clinical trial of the adoptive transfer of γδ T cells to patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma. Eleven patients who had undergone nephrectomy and had lung metastasis were enrolled. Peripheral blood γδ T cells obtained from the patients were stimulated ex vivo with 2-methyl-3-butenyl-1-pyrophosphate (2M3B1PP), a synthetic pyrophosphomonoester antigen, and transferred in combination with zoledronic acid (Zol) and teceleukin (recombinant human interleukin-2). Expanded γδ T cells exhibited potent cytotoxic activity against tumor cells in vitro, and the proportion of peripheral blood γδ T cells among CD3+ cells typically peaked three to 5 days after transfer. Tumor doubling time was prolonged in all 11 patients, and the best overall responses were 1 CR, 5 SD, and 5 PD, as defined based on Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors (RECIST). Although ten patients developed adverse reactions of grade ≥3, they were likely to have been the result of the concomitant infusion of Zol and IL-2, and most symptoms swiftly reverted to normal during the course of treatment. In conclusion, this clinical trial demonstrated that our regimen for the adoptive transfer of γδ T cells in combination with Zol and IL-2 was well tolerated and that objective clinical responses could be achieved in some patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma.


γδ T cell Nitrogen-containing bisphosphonate Pyrophosphomonoester Isopentenyl pyrophosphate Renal cell carcinoma Cancer immunotherapy 



This work was supported by Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research from the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture, Sports, and Technology of Japan (MEXT) and by Special Coordination Funds for Promoting Science and Technology from MEXT and Astellas Pharma Inc. as part of the “Formation of Innovation Center for Fusion of Advanced Technologies” program. The authors wish to acknowledge the support provided by the staff from the Translational Research Informatics Center (TRI), Kobe, Hyogo, Japan, and would like to thank Ms Clare Dover for providing English correction prior to paper submission.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hirohito Kobayashi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yoshimasa Tanaka
    • 2
    • 3
  • Junji Yagi
    • 4
  • Nagahiro Minato
    • 3
  • Kazunari Tanabe
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of UrologyTokyo Women’s Medical UniversityShinjuku-ku, TokyoJapan
  2. 2.Center for Innovation in Immunoregulative Technology and Therapeutics, Graduate School of MedicineKyoto UniversitySakyo-ku, KyotoJapan
  3. 3.Department of Immunology and Cell Biology, Graduate School of MedicineKyoto UniversitySakyo-ku, KyotoJapan
  4. 4.Department of Microbiology and ImmunologyTokyo Women’s Medical UniversityShinjuku-ku, TokyoJapan

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