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ISRN Oncology
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 753427, 13 pages
Research Article

Tumor Inhibition by DepoVax-Based Cancer Vaccine Is Accompanied by Reduced Regulatory/Suppressor Cell Proliferation and Tumor Infiltration

1Immunovaccine Inc., Division of Immunology, 1344 Summer Street, Halifax, NS, Canada B3H 0A8
2Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Dalhousie University, 5850 College Street, Halifax, NS, Canada B3H 4R2

Received 15 January 2013; Accepted 6 February 2013

Academic Editors: T. T. Trangas and Y. Yamamoto

Copyright © 2013 Mohan Karkada 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.


A successful cancer vaccine needs to overcome the effects of immune-suppressor cells such as Treg lymphocytes, suppressive cytokine-secreting Tr1 cells, and myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs), while enhancing tumor-specific immune responses. Given the relative poor efficacy associated with current cancer vaccines, a novel vaccine platform called (DPX) was developed. C3 tumor-challenged mice were immunized with HPV-E7 peptide in DPX- or conventional-emulsion- (CE-) based vaccine. While control mice showed marked increase in Treg/MDSCs in spleen and blood, in mice treated with DPX-E7 the levels remained similar to tumor-free naive mice. Such differences were also seen within the tumor. Antigen-specific IL10-secreting CD4/CD8 T cells and TGF-β +CD8+ T cell frequencies were increased significantly in CE-treated and control mice in contrast to DPX-E7-immunized mice. Analysis of tumor-infiltrating cells revealed higher frequency of suppressor cells in untreated controls than in DPX-E7 group while the converse was true for tumor-infiltrating CD8 T cells. Immunization of tumor-bearing HLA-A2 transgenic mice with human vaccine DPX-0907, a peptide-based vaccine for breast/ovarian/prostate cancers, showed efficient induction of immune response to cancer peptides despite the presence of suppressor cells. Thus, this study provides the rationale for using DPX-based cancer vaccines in immune-suppressed cancer patients, to induce effective anticancer immunity.