Predicted Markers of Overall Survival in Pancreatic Cancer Patients Receiving Dendritic Cell Vaccinations Targeting WT1

PMID: 31216557
Journal: Oncology (volume: , issue: , Oncology 2019 Jun;:1-14)
Published: 2019-06-19

Ito Z, Kan S, Bito T, Horiuchi S, Akasu T, Yoshida S, Kajihara M, Hokari A, Saruta M, Yoshida N, Kobayashi M, Ohkusa T, Shimodaira S, Okamoto M, Sugiyama H, Koido S


BACKGROUND: We have developed a Wilms‘ tumor 1 (WT1)-targeting dendritic cell (DC)-based cancer vaccine combined with standard chemotherapy for patients with advanced pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA).

METHODS: We evaluated predictive markers of overall survival (OS) in PDA patients treated with multiple major histocompatibility complex class I/II-restricted, WT1 peptide-pulsed DC vaccinations (DC/WT1-I/II) in combination with chemotherapy. Throughout the entire period of immunochemotherapy, the plasma levels of soluble factors derived from granulocytes of 7 eligible PDA patients were examined. Moreover, systemic inflammatory response markers (neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio [NLR], monocyte-to-lymphocyte ratio [MLR], and granulocyte-to-lymphocyte ratio [GLR]) were assessed. In addition, cytoplasmic WT1 expression in PDA cells was examined.

RESULTS: Compared to the 4 non-super-responders (OS <1 year), the remaining 3 super-responders (OS ≥1 year) showed significantly decreased low plasma matrix metalloproteinase-9 levels throughout long-term therapy. The NLR, MLR, and GLR after 5 DC/WT1-I/II vaccinations and 3 cycles of gemcitabine were significantly lower in the super-responders than in the non-super-responders. Furthermore, the cytoplasmic WT1 expression in the PDA cells of super-responders was relatively weak compared to that in the PDA cells of non-super-responders.

CONCLUSIONS: Prolonged low levels of a granulocyte-related systemic inflammatory response after the early period of therapy and low cytoplasmic WT1 expression in PDA cells may be markers predictive of OS in PDA patients receiving WT1-targeting immunochemotherapy.