Although the activation of innate immunity to treat a wide variety of cancers is gaining increasing attention, it has been poorly investigated in human papillomavirus (HPV)-associated malignancies. Because these tumors harbor a severely impaired cGAS-STING axis, but they still retain a largely functional RIG-I pathway, another critical mediator of adaptive and innate immune responses, we asked whether RIG-I activation by the 5'ppp-RNA RIG-I agonist M8 would represent a therapeutically viable option to treat HPV+ cancers. Here, we show that M8 transfection of two cervical carcinoma-derived cell lines, CaSki and HeLa, both expressing a functional RIG-I, triggers intrinsic apoptotic cell death, which is significantly reduced in RIG-I KO cells. We also demonstrate that M8 stimulation potentiates cisplatin-mediated cell killing of HPV+ cells in a RIG-I dependent manner. This combination treatment is equally effective in reducing tumor growth in a syngeneic pre-clinical mouse model of HPV16-driven cancer, where enhanced expression of lymphocyte-recruiting chemokines and cytokines correlated with an increased number of activated natural killer (NK) cells in the tumor microenvironment. Consistent with a role of RIG-I signaling in immunogenic cell killing, stimulation of NK cells with conditioned medium from M8-transfected CaSki boosted NK cell proliferation, activation, and migration in a RIG-I-dependent tumor cell-intrinsic manner. Given the highly conserved molecular mechanisms of carcinogenesis and genomic features of HPV-driven cancers and the remarkably improved prognosis for HPV+ oropharyngeal cancer, targeting RIG-I may represent an effective immunotherapeutic strategy in this setting, favoring the development of de-escalating strategies.

The RIG-I agonist M8 triggers cell death and natural killer cell activation in human papillomavirus-associated cancer and potentiates cisplatin cytotoxicity

Girone C.;Calati F.;Lo Cigno I.;Borgogna C.;Gariglio M.
Ultimo
2023-01-01

Abstract

Although the activation of innate immunity to treat a wide variety of cancers is gaining increasing attention, it has been poorly investigated in human papillomavirus (HPV)-associated malignancies. Because these tumors harbor a severely impaired cGAS-STING axis, but they still retain a largely functional RIG-I pathway, another critical mediator of adaptive and innate immune responses, we asked whether RIG-I activation by the 5'ppp-RNA RIG-I agonist M8 would represent a therapeutically viable option to treat HPV+ cancers. Here, we show that M8 transfection of two cervical carcinoma-derived cell lines, CaSki and HeLa, both expressing a functional RIG-I, triggers intrinsic apoptotic cell death, which is significantly reduced in RIG-I KO cells. We also demonstrate that M8 stimulation potentiates cisplatin-mediated cell killing of HPV+ cells in a RIG-I dependent manner. This combination treatment is equally effective in reducing tumor growth in a syngeneic pre-clinical mouse model of HPV16-driven cancer, where enhanced expression of lymphocyte-recruiting chemokines and cytokines correlated with an increased number of activated natural killer (NK) cells in the tumor microenvironment. Consistent with a role of RIG-I signaling in immunogenic cell killing, stimulation of NK cells with conditioned medium from M8-transfected CaSki boosted NK cell proliferation, activation, and migration in a RIG-I-dependent tumor cell-intrinsic manner. Given the highly conserved molecular mechanisms of carcinogenesis and genomic features of HPV-driven cancers and the remarkably improved prognosis for HPV+ oropharyngeal cancer, targeting RIG-I may represent an effective immunotherapeutic strategy in this setting, favoring the development of de-escalating strategies.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11579/168304
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