AbstractBACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Campath-1H is used in conditioning regimens and more recently as an anti-leukemic therapy in acute lymphoblastic leukemias (ALL). We therefore investigated CD52 expression and campath-1H-mediated lysis of ALL cells in vitro. DESIGN AND METHODS: Complement-mediated cytotoxicity assays were performed on freshly isolated neoplastic cells and cell lines using human serum. Antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) was performed by calcein-AM release assays. RESULTS: CD52 was expressed in four out of eight ALL cell lines studied. Among 61 freshly isolated ALL samples CD52 was expressed at varying levels in 87% of cases. Whereas ADCC was equivalent in different CD52+ lines, complement-dependent cytotoxicity (CDC) was variable. The REH cell line bearing the t(12;21) translocation showed 47-60% lysis when treated with 10 microg/mL campath-1H compared to 0-6% for the other cell lines expressing equivalent amounts of CD52. Furthermore all nine ALL samples with t(12;21) showed very high CDC (mean 97%) compared to the other 24 CD52+cases (mean 24%)(p<0.0001). In t(12;21) samples, efficient CDC was obtained with as little as 1 microg/mL campath-1H. CDC correlated in part with CD52 levels, suggesting that CD52 expression and other yet undefined factors contribute to the particular sensitivity of t(12;21) cells. The resistance of non t(12;21) ALL cases could be overcome to a limited extent by increasing the concentration of campath-1H, blocking the CD55 and CD59 complement inhibitors, and more effectively by combining campath-1H with fludarabine. INTERPRETATION AND CONCLUSIONS: We conclude that most ALL samples express CD52 to a variable level and that campath-1H has cytotoxic activity against CD52+ALL, alone or in combination with cytotoxic drugs.
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Vol. 91 No. 3 (2006): March, 2006 : Comparative Studies
Ferrata Storti Foundation, Pavia, Italy
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