Current Gene Therapy

Ignacio Anegon
Director INSERM UMR 1064-Center for Research in Transplantation and Immunology
CHU de Nantes. 30, boulevard
Nantes
France

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Interleukin-15 in Gene Therapy of Cancer

Author(s): Maria C. Ochoa, Guillermo Mazzolini, Sandra Hervas-Stubbs, Miguel F. de Sanmamed, Pedro Berraondo, Ignacio Melero.

Abstract:

Interleukin-15 (IL-15) exerts powerful stimulatory effects on lymphocyte subsets that result in antiviral and antitumoral activities. The functions of this cytokine are mainly mediated in a cell-to-cell contact fashion termed IL-15 trans-presentation. This function is mediated by a cell which tethers IL-15 to its plasmatic membrane complexed to IL-15 receptor alpha (IL-15Rα). Such surface complexes interact with interleukin-2 receptor beta and gamma on the adjacent cell to elicit signaling. Unlike interleukin-2, IL-15 protects from activation-induced cell death and does not promote regulatory cells. These features underlie its activity against transplanted tumors and its adjuvanticity in tumor and viral vaccines. The GMP-manufactured recombinant protein is undergoing clinical trials but its rapid renal clearance calls for biotechnological strategies to increase molecular weight and ensure IL-15Rα trans-presentation. Since early efforts with stable transfected tumor cells, IL-15 has been tested in a variety gene therapy approaches. Those mainly include transfer of expression cassettes to tumor cells, T cells, dendritic cells, vaccination sites and the liver as a biofactory organ. Detailed mechanistic knowledge of IL-15 biology is envisaged to make the most of a powerful immunotherapeutic tool ranked as one of the most promising for cancer immunotherapy.

Keywords: Cancer, gene therapy, interleukin-15, immunotherapy, cytokine, interleukin 2, tumors, T cells

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Article Details

VOLUME: 13
ISSUE: 1
Year: 2013
Page: [15 - 30]
Pages: 16
DOI: 10.2174/1566523211313010003