Systematic Screening of Chemokines to Identify Candidates to Model and Create Ectopic Lymph Node Structures for Cancer Immunotherapy

Sci Rep. 2017 Nov 22;7(1):15996. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-15924-2.


The induction of ectopic lymph node structures (ELNs) holds great promise to augment immunotherapy against multiple cancers including metastatic melanoma, in which ELN formation has been associated with a unique immune-related gene expression signature composed of distinct chemokines. To investigate the therapeutic potential of ELNs induction, preclinical models of ELNs are needed for interrogation of these chemokines. Computational models provide a non-invasive, cost-effective method to investigate leukocyte trafficking in the tumor microenvironment, but parameterizing such models is difficult due to differing assay conditions and contexts among the literature. To better achieve this, we systematically performed microchemotaxis assays on purified immune subsets including human pan-T cells, CD4+ T cells, CD8+ T cells, B cells, and NK cells, with 49 recombinant chemokines using a singular technique, and standardized conditions resulting in a dataset representing 238 assays. We then outline a groundwork computational model that can simulate cellular migration in the tumor microenvironment in response to a chemoattractant gradient created from stromal, lymphoid, or antigen presenting cell interactions. The resulting model can then be parameterized with standardized data, such as the dataset presented here, and demonstrates how a computational approach can help elucidate developing ELNs and their impact on tumor progression.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • B-Lymphocytes / metabolism
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / metabolism
  • Chemokines / analysis
  • Computer Simulation*
  • Early Detection of Cancer / methods*
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy
  • Tertiary Lymphoid Structures / diagnosis
  • Tumor Microenvironment / physiology


  • Chemokines