Targeting the tumor microenvironment with interferon-β bridges innate and adaptive immune responses.
We tested the efficacy of CD8+ T cells lacking the Cbl-b gene against a panel of mammary tumor lines with different intrinsic sensitivities to T cells. Mice bearing established tumors expressing an ovalbumin-tagged version of HER-2/neu underwent adoptive transfer with Cbl-b-replete or -null CD8+ T cells from OT-I T cell receptor transgenic donor mice. In general, Cbl-b-null OT-I cells showed enhanced expansion, persistence, and capacity for tumor infiltration. This resulted in markedly enhanced efficacy against two tumor lines that normally demonstrate complete (NOP21) or partial (NOP23) regression. Moreover, a third tumor line (NOP6) that normally demonstrates progressive disease underwent complete regression in response to Cbl-b-null OT-I cells. However, a fourth tumor line (NOP18) was resistant to Cbl-b-null OT-I cells owing to a profound barrier to lymphocyte infiltration. Thus, Cbl-b-null CD8+ T cells are generally more efficacious but are nonetheless unable to mediate curative responses against all tumor phenotypes.