Bladder tumor ILC1s undergo Th17-like differentiation in human bladder cancer – DocWire News

This article was originally published here
Cancer Med. 2021 Sep 8. doi: 10.1002/cam4.4243. Online ahead of print.
PURPOSE: Human innate lymphoid cells (hILCs) are lineage-negative immune cells that do not express rearranged adaptive antigen receptors. Natural killer (NK) cells are hILCs that contribute to cancer defense. The role of non-NK hILCs in cancer is unclear. Our study aimed to characterize non-NK hILCs in bladder cancer.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Mass cytometry was used to characterize intratumoral non-NK hILCs based on 35 parameters, including receptors, cytokines, and transcription factors from 21 muscle-invasive bladder tumors. Model-based clustering was performed on t-distributed stochastic neighbor embedding (t-SNE) coordinates of hILCs, and the association of hILCs with tumor stage was analyzed.
RESULTS: Most frequent among intratumoral non-NK hILCs were hILC1s, which were increased in higher compared with lower stage tumors. Intratumoral hILC1s were marked by Th17-like phenotype with high RORγt, IL-17, and IL-22 compared to Th1 differentiation markers, including Tbet, perforin, and IFN-γ. Compared with intratumoral hILC2s and hILC3s, hILC1s also had lower expression of activation markers (NKp30, NKp46, and CD69) and increased expression of exhaustion molecules (PD-1 and Tim3). Unsupervised clustering identified nine clusters of bladder hILCs, which were not defined by the primary hILC subtypes 1-3. hILC1s featured in all the nine clusters indicating that intratumoral hILC1s displayed the highest phenotypic heterogeneity among all hILCs.
CONCLUSIONS: hILC1s are increased in higher stage tumors among patients with muscle-invasive bladder cancer. These intratumoral hILC1s exhibit an exhausted phenotype and Th17-like differentiation, identifying them as potential targets for immunotherapy.
PMID:34496133 | DOI:10.1002/cam4.4243