Immunological markers of dendritic cell vaccine response in glioblastoma patients

Skachkova O.V.1, Glavatskyi O.Ya.2, Zemskova O.V.2, Gorbach O.I.1, Khranovska N.M.1, Khmelnytskyi H.V.2, Shuba I.M.2

Summary. Glioblastoma is the most prevalent malignant brain tumor in adult. The survival outcome is generally poor, and hence immunotherapeutic treatment options are being actively developed. This study investigates the population and subpopulation changes of peripheral blood lymphocytes in newly diagnosed glioblastoma patients treated with autologous dendritic cell vaccination (DCV). The correlation between survival rate and changes in the distribution of lymphocytes was obtained. Materials and methods. The cohort includes 24 patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma treated with the addition of DCV to standart adjuvant treatment, after performing of surgical resection and completion of radiation therapy. The analysis of the population and subpopulation distribution of peripheral blood lymphocytes was performed by flow cytometry. Results. The overall 2-years survival rate with DCV added to adjuvant therapy was 52%. The most significant changes were observed for T- and B- lymphocytes and subpopulations: T-helper cells (CD3+4+), activated lymphocytes (CD3+ HLA+) and myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSC) (HLA-DR-11b+33+). DCV promotes a decrease in the relative number of MDSC in the peripheral blood of patients. It has found that only one indicator has high sensitivity and specificity, namely the number of NKTK (CD3+16+56+-lymphocytes) in the peripheral blood. The threshold values of NKTK were calculated: before immunotherapy — ≤9%, after —≤13%, which allow predicting the effectiveness of immunotherapy with a sensitivity of 77 to 86%. Conclusions. The findings suggest that quantitative changes in the NKTC subpopulation in glioblastoma patients during DCV-immunotherapy should be used as immunologic criteria for its effectiveness.

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