Consecutive low doses of cyclophosphamide preferentially target Tregs and potentiate T cell responses induced by DNA PLG microparticle immunization

Cell Immunol. 2010;262(2):150-61. doi: 10.1016/j.cellimm.2010.02.007. Epub 2010 Feb 12.


Cyclophosphamide in combination with immunotherapeutic approaches preferentially impinges on T(reg) activity and allows for robust generation of T cell effectors. Reduced dosages of cyclophosphamide are necessary to restrict its cytotoxic effects to the negative regulatory cell populations while sparing effector lymphocytes. We investigated cyclophosphamide dosing in combination with ZYC300, a PLG-encapsulated plasmid DNA vaccine which encodes the cytochrome P450 family member, CYP1B1, a known human tumor-associated antigen. In mice, three consecutive, low doses of cyclophosphamide comprised a superior regimen in enhancing the magnitude, diversity of epitopes, and avidity to individual epitopes of specific T cell responses when compared to regimens that used either a single low or a single high dose. Consecutive low doses of cyclophosphamide predominantly targeted T(regs) while sparing overall T lymphocyte counts. Thus, we report the synergistic activity of pharmacologic T(reg) depletion with cyclophosphamide on quantitatively and qualitatively increasing T cell responses to a known human tumor-associated antigen.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigens, Neoplasm / immunology
  • Aryl Hydrocarbon Hydroxylases / genetics
  • Aryl Hydrocarbon Hydroxylases / immunology
  • Cell Line
  • Cyclophosphamide / immunology
  • Cyclophosphamide / pharmacology*
  • Cytochrome P-450 CYP1B1
  • Drug Compounding
  • Epitopes / immunology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunization
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / immunology
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / pharmacology*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C3H
  • Spleen / cytology
  • Spleen / immunology
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets / drug effects*
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / drug effects*
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / immunology
  • Vaccines, DNA* / administration & dosage
  • Vaccines, DNA* / immunology
  • Vaccines, DNA* / pharmacology


  • Antigens, Neoplasm
  • Epitopes
  • Immunosuppressive Agents
  • Vaccines, DNA
  • Cyclophosphamide
  • Aryl Hydrocarbon Hydroxylases
  • CYP1B1 protein, human
  • Cyp1b1 protein, mouse
  • Cytochrome P-450 CYP1B1