Coordinated Immune Cell Networks in the Bone Marrow Microenvironment Define the Graft versus Leukemia Response with Adoptive Cellular Therapy.

bioRxiv : the preprint server for biology

Understanding how intra-tumoral immune populations coordinate to generate anti-tumor responses following therapy can guide precise treatment prioritization. We performed systematic dissection of an established adoptive cellular therapy, donor lymphocyte infusion (DLI), by analyzing 348,905 single-cell transcriptomes from 74 longitudinal bone-marrow samples of 25 patients with relapsed myeloid leukemia; a subset was evaluated by protein-based spatial analysis. In acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) responders, diverse immune cell types within the bone-marrow microenvironment (BME) were predicted to interact with a clonally expanded population of CD8+ cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) which demonstrated specificity for autologous leukemia. This population, originating predominantly from the DLI product, expanded concurrently with NK and B cells. AML nonresponder BME revealed a paucity of crosstalk and elevated expression in CD8+ CTLs. Our study highlights recipient BME differences as a key determinant of effective anti-leukemia response and opens new opportunities to modulate cell-based leukemia-directed therapy.

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bioRxiv : the preprint server for biology
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