High-mobility group box 1 (HMGB1) is involved in the tumor-associated activation of regulatory T cells (Treg), but the mechanisms remain unknown. In a mouse tumor model, silencing HMGB1 in tumor cells or inhibiting tumor-derived HMGB1 not only dampened the capacity of tumor cells to produce thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP), but also aborted the tumor-associated modulation of Treg-activating DC. Tumor-derived HMGB1 triggered the production of TSLP by tumor cells. Importantly, both tumor-derived HMGB1 and TSLP were necessary for modulating DC to activate Treg in a TSLP receptor (TSLPR)-dependent manner. In the therapeutic model, intratumorally inhibiting tumor-derived HMGB1 (causing downstream loss of TSLP production) attenuated Treg activation, unleashed tumor-specific CD8 T cell responses, and elicited CD8α+/CD103+DC- and T cell-dependent antitumor activity. These results suggest a new pathway for the activation of Treg involving in tumor-derived HMGB1 and TSLP, and have important implications for incorporating HMGB1 inhibitors into cancer immunotherapy.
Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy – Springer Journals
Published: Nov 7, 2017
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