NKT cells act through third party bone marrow-derived cells to suppress NK cell activity in the liver and exacerbate hepatic melanoma metastases

Leila Sadegh, Peter W. Chen, Joseph R. Brown, Zhiqiang Han, Jerry Y. Niederkorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

Uveal melanoma (UM) is the most common intraocular tumor in adults and liver metastasis is the leading cause of death in UM patients. We have previously shown that NKT cell-deficient mice develop significantly fewer liver metastases from intraocular melanomas than do wild-type (WT) mice. Here, we examine the interplay between liver NKT cells and NK cells in resistance to liver metastases from intraocular melanomas. NKT cell-deficient CD1d<sup>-/-</sup> mice and WT C57BL/6 mice treated with anti-CD1d antibody developed significantly fewer liver metastases than WT mice following either intraocular or intrasplenic injection of B16LS9 melanoma cells. The increased number of metastases in WT mice was associated with reduced liver NK cytotoxicity and decreased production of IFN-γ. However, liver NK cell-mediated cytotoxic activity was identical in non-tumor bearing NKT cell-deficient mice and WT mice, indicating that liver metastases were crucial for the suppression of liver NK cells. Depressed liver NK cytotoxicity in WT mice was associated with production of IL-10 by bone marrow-derived liver cells that were neither Kupffer cells nor myeloid-derived suppressor cells and by increased IL-10 receptor expression on liver NK cells. IL-10<sup>-/-</sup> mice had significantly fewer liver metastases than WT mice, but were not significantly different from NKT cell-deficient mice. Thus, development of melanoma liver metastases is associated with upregulation of IL-10 in the liver and an elevated expression of IL-10 receptor on liver NK cells. This impairment of liver NK activity is NKT cell-dependent and only occurs in hosts with melanoma liver metastases. What's new? Natural killer T (NKT) cells are a distinct population of T cells with the characteristics of both innate and adaptive immunity whose role in the development of liver metastases from intraocular melanomas requires further clarification. Here, using a mouse model, the authors find that NKT cells in the liver cross-regulate liver NK cells by upregulating IL-10 receptor on the surface of NK cells and by stimulating IL-10 production by bone marrow-derived liver cells. NKT cell impairment of NK cell activity is limited to the liver and occurs only in mice harboring liver metastases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1085-1094
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Cancer
Volume137
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2015

Keywords

  • eye
  • IL-10
  • metastases
  • NKG2D
  • ocular tumors
  • uveal melanoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

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