Treatment with proteasome inhibitor bortezomib enhances antigen-specific CD8+ T-cell-mediated antitumor immunity induced by DNA vaccination

J Mol Med (Berl). 2008 Aug;86(8):899-908. doi: 10.1007/s00109-008-0370-y. Epub 2008 Jun 10.


There is an urgent need to develop new innovative therapies for the control of cancer. Antigen-specific immunotherapy and the employment of proteasome inhibitors have emerged as two potentially plausible approaches for the control of cancer. In the current study, we explored the combination of the DNA vaccine encoding calreticulin (CRT) linked to human papillomavirus type 16 E7 antigen (CRT/E7) with the proteasome inhibitor, bortezomib, for their ability to generate E7-specific immune responses and antitumor effects in vaccinated mice. We found that the combination of treatment with bortezomib and CRT/E7(detox) DNA generated more potent E7-specific CD8+ T cell immune responses and better therapeutic effects against TC-1 tumors in tumor-bearing mice compared to monotherapy. Furthermore, we found that treatment with bortezomib led to increased apoptosis of TC-1 tumor cells and could render the TC-1 tumor cells more susceptible to lysis by E7-specific CD8+ T cells. Our data have significant implications for future clinical translation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Apoptosis
  • Boronic Acids / therapeutic use*
  • Bortezomib
  • Calreticulin / genetics
  • Cancer Vaccines / administration & dosage
  • Cancer Vaccines / immunology
  • Cancer Vaccines / therapeutic use*
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Papillomavirus E7 Proteins / genetics
  • Papillomavirus E7 Proteins / immunology
  • Protease Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Proteasome Inhibitors*
  • Pyrazines / therapeutic use*
  • T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic / drug effects
  • T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic / immunology*
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • Vaccines, DNA / administration & dosage
  • Vaccines, DNA / immunology
  • Vaccines, DNA / therapeutic use*


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Boronic Acids
  • Calreticulin
  • Cancer Vaccines
  • Papillomavirus E7 Proteins
  • Protease Inhibitors
  • Proteasome Inhibitors
  • Pyrazines
  • Vaccines, DNA
  • Bortezomib