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Tissue-resident memory T cells are epigenetically cytotoxic with signs of exhaustion in human urinary bladder cancer
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2018 (English)In: Clinical and Experimental Immunology, ISSN 0009-9104, E-ISSN 1365-2249, Vol. 194, no 1, p. 39-53Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Tissue-resident memory T (TRM ) cells are CD8+ T lymphocytes that reside in the tissues, including tumours. This T cell subset possesses a magnitude of cytotoxicity, but its epigenetic regulation has not been studied. Here, we investigate the impact of perforin DNA methylation in TRM cells and correlate it with their functional potential. Fifty-three urothelial urinary bladder cancer (UBC) patients were recruited prospectively. The DNA methylation status of the perforin gene (PRF1) locus in TRM cells was investigated by pyrosequencing. Flow cytometry with ViSNE analysis and in-vitro stimulation were used to evaluate TRM cell phenotypes. We discovered that tumour TRM cells have low DNA methylation in the PRF1 locus (32·9% methylation), which corresponds to increased numbers of perforin-expressing TRM cells. Surprisingly, programmed cell death 1 (PD-1) expression is high in tumour TRM cells, suggesting exhaustion. Following interleukin-15 and T cell receptor stimulation, perforin and T-bet expressions are enhanced, indicating that TRM cells from tumours are not terminally exhausted. Moreover, a high number of TRM cells infiltrating the tumours corresponds to lower tumour stage in patients. In conclusion, TRM cells from UBC tumours are epigenetically cytotoxic with signs of exhaustion. This finding identifies TRM cells as potential new targets for cancer immunotherapy.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
John Wiley & Sons, 2018. Vol. 194, no 1, p. 39-53
Keywords [en]
CD8-positive T lymphocytes, DNA methylation, cell exhaustion, perforin, tissue-resident memory T cells, urinary bladder neoplasms
National Category
Urology and Nephrology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-151285DOI: 10.1111/cei.13183ISI: 000445601500005PubMedID: 30009527OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-151285DiVA, id: diva2:1243978
Available from: 2018-08-31 Created: 2018-08-31 Last updated: 2018-12-07Bibliographically approved

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Riklund, KatrineSherif, Amir

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