Oxaliplatin Treatment Alters Systemic Immune Responses

Vanesa Stojanovska, Monica Prakash, Rachel McQuade, Sarah Fraser, Vasso Apostolopoulos, Samy Sakkal, Kulmira Nurgali

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39 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose. Oxaliplatin is a platinum-based chemotherapeutic agent demonstrating significant antitumor efficacy. Unlike conventional anticancer agents which are immunosuppressive, oxaliplatin has the capacity to stimulate immunological effects in response to the presentation of damage associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) elicited upon cell death. However, the effects of oxaliplatin treatment on systemic immune responses remain largely unknown. Aims of this study were to investigate the effects of oxaliplatin treatment on the proportions of (1) splenic T cells, B cells, macrophages, pro-/anti-inflammatory cytokines, gene expression of splenic cytokines, chemokines, and mediators; (2) double-positive and single-positive CD4 + and CD8 + T thymocytes; (3) bone-marrow hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells. Methods. Male BALB/c mice received intraperitoneal injections of oxaliplatin (3mg/kg/d) or sterile water tri-weekly for 2 weeks. Leukocyte populations within the spleen, thymus, and bone-marrow were assessed using flow cytometry. RT-PCR was performed to characterise changes in splenic inflammation-associated genes. Results. Oxaliplatin treatment reduced spleen size and cellularity (CD45 + cells), increased the proportion of CD4 + , CD8 + , and Treg cells, and elevated TNF-α expression. Oxaliplatin was selectively cytotoxic to B cells but had no effect on splenic macrophages. Oxaliplatin treatment altered the gene expression of several cytokines, chemokines, and cell mediators. Oxaliplatin did not deplete double-positive thymocytes but increased the single-positive CD8 + subset. There was also an increase in activated (CD69 + ) CD8 + T cells. Bone-marrow hematopoietic progenitor pool was demonstrably normal following oxaliplatin treatment when compared to the vehicle-treated cohort. Conclusion. Oxaliplatin does not cause systemic immunosuppression and, instead, has the capacity to induce beneficial antitumor immune responses.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4650695
Number of pages15
JournalBioMed Research International
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019
Externally publishedYes

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