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Journal of Immunology Research
Volume 2018, Article ID 3982942, 15 pages
Research Article

Proteomic Identification of Heat Shock-Induced Danger Signals in a Melanoma Cell Lysate Used in Dendritic Cell-Based Cancer Immunotherapy

1Laboratory of Experimental Immunology & Cancer, Faculty of Dentistry, Universidad de Chile, 8380492 Santiago, Chile
2Millennium Institute on Immunology and Immunotherapy, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Universidad de Chile, 8380453 Santiago, Chile
3Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics, Karolinska Institute, 17177 Stockholm, Sweden
4Disciplinary Program of Immunology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Universidad de Chile, 8380453 Santiago, Chile
5Laboratory of Molecular Virology, Departamento de Enfermedades Infecciosas e Inmunología Pediátrica, School of Medicine, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, 8331150 Santiago, Chile
6Millennium Institute on Immunology and Immunotherapy, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, 8331150 Santiago, Chile

Correspondence should be addressed to Fermín E. González; lc.elihcu@zelaznogf and Roman A. Zubarev; es.ik@verabuz.namor

Received 29 June 2017; Revised 28 November 2017; Accepted 11 December 2017; Published 18 March 2018

Academic Editor: Aurelia Rughetti

Copyright © 2018 Fermín E. González 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.


Autologous dendritic cells (DCs) loaded with cancer cell-derived lysates have become a promising tool in cancer immunotherapy. During the last decade, we demonstrated that vaccination of advanced melanoma patients with autologous tumor antigen presenting cells (TAPCells) loaded with an allogeneic heat shock- (HS-) conditioned melanoma cell-derived lysate (called TRIMEL) is able to induce an antitumor immune response associated with a prolonged patient survival. TRIMEL provides not only a broad spectrum of potential melanoma-associated antigens but also danger signals that are crucial in the induction of a committed mature DC phenotype. However, potential changes induced by heat conditioning on the proteome of TRIMEL are still unknown. The identification of newly or differentially expressed proteins under defined stress conditions is relevant for understanding the lysate immunogenicity. Here, we characterized the proteomic profile of TRIMEL in response to HS treatment. A quantitative label-free proteome analysis of over 2800 proteins was performed, with 91 proteins that were found to be regulated by HS treatment: 18 proteins were overexpressed and 73 underexpressed. Additionally, 32 proteins were only identified in the HS-treated TRIMEL and 26 in non HS-conditioned samples. One protein from the overexpressed group and two proteins from the HS-exclusive group were previously described as potential damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs). Some of the HS-induced proteins, such as haptoglobin, could be also considered as DAMPs and candidates for further immunological analysis in the establishment of new putative danger signals with immunostimulatory functions.