Background: To develop peptide-based immunotherapy for osteosarcoma, we previously identified papillomavirus binding factor (PBF) as a CTL-defined osteosarcoma antigen in the context of HLA-B55. However, clinical application of PBF-based immunotherapy requires identification of naturally presented CTL epitopes in osteosarcoma cells in the context of more common HLA molecules such as HLA-A2. Methods: Ten peptides with the HLA-A*0201 binding motif were synthesized from the amino acid sequence of PBF according to the BIMAS score and screened with an HLA class I stabilization assay. The frequency of CTLs recognizing the selected PBF-derived peptide was determined in peripheral blood of five HLA-A*0201+ patients with osteosarcoma using limiting dilution (LD)/mixed lymphocyte peptide culture (MLPC) followed by tetramer-based frequency analysis. Attempts were made to establish PBF-specific CTL clones from the tetramer-positive CTL pool by a combination of limiting dilution and single-cell sorting. The cytotoxicity of CTLs was assessed by 51Cr release assay. Results: Peptide PBF A2.2 showed the highest affinity toHLA-A*0201. CD8+ T cells reacting with the PBF A2.2 peptide were detected in three of five patients at frequencies from 2 × 10-7 to 5 × 10-6. A tetramer-positive PBF A2.2-specific CTL line, 5A9, specifically lysed allogeneic osteosarcoma cell lines that expressed both PBF and either HLA-A*0201 or HLA-A*0206, autologous tumor cells, and T2 pulsed with PBF A2.2. Five of 12 tetramer-positive CTL clones also lysed allogeneic osteosarcoma cell lines expressing both PBF and either HLA-A*0201 or HLA-A*0206 and T2 pulsed with PBF A2.2. Conclusion: These findings indicate that PBF A2.2 serves as a CTL epitope on osteosarcoma cells in the context of HLA-A*0201, and potentially, HLA-A*0206. This extends the availability of PBF-derived therapeutic peptide vaccines for patients with osteosarcoma. © 2009 Tsukahara et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Tsukahara, T., Kawaguchi, S., Torigoe, T., Takahashi, A., Murase, M., Kano, M., … Sato, N. (2009). HLA-A*0201-restricted CTL epitope of a novel osteosarcoma antigen, papillomavirus binding factor. Journal of Translational Medicine, 7. https://doi.org/10.1186/1479-5876-7-44