DNA vaccines to target the cancer testis antigen PASD1 in human multiple myeloma.
Joseph-Pietras D., Gao Y., Zojer N., Ait-Tahar K., Banham AH., Pulford K., Rice J., Savelyeva N., Sahota SS.
We previously described PASD1 as a new cancer testis antigen in multiple myeloma (MM) that is retained post-therapy, suggesting the use of vaccination strategies to induce anti-PASD1 immunity in a setting of minimal residual disease. We have focused on DNA fusion gene vaccines, coupling fragment C domain (DOM) of tetanus toxin with PASD1 sequence, and examined efficacy in Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA)-A2 (HHD) transgenic mice using a human MM cell line expressing PASD1 protein and chimeric HLA-A2 class I molecules as target. DNA vaccines encoded two HLA-A2-restricted epitopes (p.DOM-PASD1(1), p.DOM-PASD1(2)) and full-length PASD1 (p.DOM-PASD1FL). p.DOM-PASD1(1) proved superior to p.DOM-PASD1(2) in generating T-cell responses in HHD mice, able to lyse the chimeric murine RMA-HHD cells. Boosting by electroporation significantly enhanced p.DOM-PASD1(1). Only p.DOM-PASD1(1) induced cytotoxic T-lymphocytes (CTLs) were able to lyse human MM target cells expressing endogenous antigen. The p.DOM-PASD1FL vaccine predominantly induced strong PASD1(1) over PASD1(2) T-cell immune responses, indicative of immunodominance. Importantly, p.DOM-PASD1FL generated immune-mediating killing of native chimeric MM cells, in the absence of exogenous added peptide, implicating PASD1(1) specific CTLs. These data demonstrate that PASD1-derived epitopes are both efficiently and selectively processed and presented by native human MM cells. Notably, they permit the use of PASD1-encoding DNA vaccine therapy in a clinical setting.