Natural killer (NK) cells are attractive candidates for allogeneic cell-based immunotherapy due to their potent antitumor effector function and good safety profile. NK cells express killer immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIRs) and the NKG2A receptor important for NK cells education as well as providing inhibitory signals upon encountering HLA-expressing target cells. Multiple myeloma (MM) is an example of a tumor expressing relatively high levels of HLA molecules. In this review, we discuss the functional relevance of inhibitory KIRs and NKG2A for NK cells anti-MM response and strategies to lower these inhibitory signaling to enhance clinical efficacy of allogeneic NK cells in MM.
Keywords: HLA class I; HLA-E; KIR; NK cell; NKG2A; immunotherapy; multiple myeloma.