Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) cells are ineffective antigen-presenting cells (APCs) although CD401-activated CLL cells can stimulate proliferation of autologous and allogeneic T cells. We examined the antigen-presenting capacity of CD40-activated CLL cells as well as dendritic cells pulsed with apoptotic bodies of CLL cells to generate autologous and allogeneic immune responses against CLL cells. Both APC types were capable of generating T-cell lines that proliferate specifically in response to unstimulated CLL cells. Whereas cytotoxic responses against stimulated and unstimulated CLL cells could be repeatedly generated by allogeneic healthy donors, autologous cytotoxic immune responses against CD40-activated and native CLL cells were rarely detected. However, T cells isolated from patients with CLL could recognize and lyse allogeneic stimulated and unstimulated CLL cells, demonstrating that cytotoxic T cells from these tumor-bearing patients are functionally intact.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology