Cytoreduction surgery reduces systemic myeloid suppressor cell populations and restores intratumoral immunotherapy effectiveness

Jarrod D. Predina, Veena Kapoor, Brendan F. Judy, Guanjun Cheng, Zvi Gregory Fridlender, Steven M. Albelda, Sunil Singhal*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Background: Multiple immunotherapy approaches have improved adaptive anti-tumor immune responses in patients with early stage disease; however, results have been less dramatic when treating patients with late stage disease. These blunted responses are likely due to a host of factors, including changes in the tumor microenvironment and systemic immunosuppressive features, which accompany advanced tumor states. We hypothesized that cytoreductive surgery could control these immunosuppressive networks and restore the potency of immunotherapy in advanced disease scenarios. Methods: To test these hypotheses, two representative intratumoral immunotherapies (an adenoviral vector encoding a suicide gene, AdV-tk, or a type-I interferon, Ad.IFNα) were tested in murine models of lung cancer. Cytoreductive surgery was performed following treatment of advanced tumors. Mechanistic underpinnings were investigated using flow cytometry, in vivo leukocyte depletion methods and in vivo tumor neutralization assays. Results: AdV-tk and Ad.IFNα were effective in treating early lung cancers, but had little anti-tumor effects in late stage cancers. Interestingly, in late stage scenarios, surgical cytoreduction unmasked the anti-tumor potency of both immunotherapeutic approaches. Immune mechanisms that explained restoration in anti-tumor immune responses included increased CD8 T-cell trafficking and reduced myeloid derived suppressor cell populations. Conclusion: This study demonstrates that surgical resection combined with immunotherapy may be a rational therapeutic option for patients with advanced stage cancer.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number34
JournalJournal of Hematology and Oncology
StatePublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
JDP was supported by a grant from the American Medical Association Foundation. LA was supported from the Lavin Family Supporting Foundation. SMA was supported by NCI P01 CA66726. SS was supported by the National Institutes of Health (K12CA076931) and National Lung Cancer Partnership (Young Investigator Award).


  • Animal model
  • Cancer
  • Immunotherapy
  • Surgical oncology


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