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Evaluation of cell surface reactive immuno-adjuvant in combination with immunogenic cell death inducing drug for in situ chemo-immunotherapy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)519-529
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Controlled Release
Published10 Jun 2020


  • Walters et al JCR 2020

    Walters_et_al_JCR_2020.pdf, 2.11 MB, application/pdf

    Uploaded date:21 Sep 2020

    Version:Final published version

    Licence:CC BY

King's Authors


Apoptotic cells and cell fragments, especially those produced as a result of immunogenic cell death (ICD), are known to be a potential source of cancer vaccine immunogen. However, due to variation between tumours and between individuals, methods to generate such preparations may require extensive ex vivo personalisation. To address this, we have utilised the concept of in situ vaccination whereby an ICD inducing drug is injected locally to generate immunogenic apoptotic fragments/cells. These fragments are then adjuvanted by a co-administered cell reactive CpG adjuvant. We first evaluate means of labelling tumour cells with CpG adjuvant, we then go on to demonstrate in vitro that labelling is preserved following apoptosis and, furthermore, that the apoptotic body-adjuvant complexes are readily transferred to macrophages. In in vivo studies we observe synergistic tumour growth delays and elevated levels of CD4+ and CD8+ cells in tumours receiving adjuvant drug combination. CD4+/CD8+ cells are likewise elevated in the tumour draining lymph node and activated to a greater extent than individual treatments. This study represents the first steps toward the evaluation of rationally formulated drug-adjuvant combinations for in situ chemo-immunotherapy.

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