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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2011, Article ID 635850, 6 pages
Research Article

Autologous Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cell Recognition of Autologous Proliferating Tumor Cells in the Context of a Patient-Specific Vaccine Trial

Cell Biology Laboratory, Hoag Cancer Center, Newport Beach, CA 92663, USA

Received 1 September 2010; Revised 10 February 2011; Accepted 27 February 2011

Academic Editor: Theresa L. Whiteside

Copyright © 2011 A. N. Cornforth et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Metastatic melanoma patients who were treated with patient-specific vaccines consisting of dendritic cells loaded with autologous tumor cells had a 5-year survival of over 50%. Enzyme-linked immunospot (ELISPOT) has been used to detect antigen reactive T cells as a means of determining immune response. We wished to determine whether IFN-gamma secretion in an ELISPOT assay was prognostic or predictive for survival following treatment. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) collected at weeks 0 and 4 were evaluated by ELISPOT assay for response to autologous tumor cells. Overall, there was slight increase in the number of tumor reactive lymphocytes from week 0 to week 4. Using >5 spots/100 K PBMC as the cutoff, a log-rank analysis revealed only a slight statistical significance in overall survival for patients who lacked tumor reactive PBMCs at week 4. The sensitivity of ELISPOT in the context of patient-specific cellular vaccines is unclear.