A murine model for B-cell lymphomagenesis in immunocompromised hosts: natural killer cells are an important component of host resistance to premalignant B-cell lines
The accompanying paper (D. W. Felsher et al., Cancer Res., 50:7042-7049, 1990) describes a new panel of cloned murine B-cell lines with a premalignant phenotype and in vivo-derived malignant variants. This paper assesses the contribution of immune mediated antitumor mechanisms which might account for host resistance to the tumorigenicity of these cell lines. Conventional T-cell-dependent responses did not appear to be critical to host resistance. In vivo elimination of T-helper cells with
... er cells with anti-L3T4 monoclonal antibody did not reduce host resistance to the tumorigenicity of these cell lines, nor did these cell lines elicit cytotoxic T-cell activity. However, a strong correlation was found between tumorigenicity and host natural killer (NK) activity. In vitro studies demonstrated that the cell lines were as NK sensitive as the prototypical NK target, YAC-1, whereas the malignant variants fully tumorigenic in normal hosts were greater than 20-fold less NK sensitive than were the parent cell lines. In vivo depletion of NK cells with anti-asialo-GM1 in BALB/c strongly diminished host resistance to cell line tumorigenicity, whereas polydeoxyinosinic-deoxycytidilic acid induction of NK cells enhanced host resistance. These findings indicate that NK function is a critical component to host resistance in this system and suggest that endogenous cellular mechanisms which overcome NK sensitivity could be a target for secondary transforming events in B-cell lymphomagenesis. They also raise the unexpected possibility that a non-antigen-dependent (versus immune cytotoxic T-lymphocytes) effector mechanism may be the key deficit promoting B-cell neoplasia in the setting of immunocompromised states.