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Cervical Cancer Neoantigen Landscape and Immune Activity is Associated with Human Papillomavirus Master Regulators

By Yong Qin, Suhendan Ekmekcioglu, Marie-Andrée Forget, Lorant Szekvolgyi, Patrick Hwu, Elizabeth A. Grimm, Amir A. Jazaeri and Jason Roszik and Jason Roszik


Human papillomaviruses (HPVs) play a major role in development of cervical cancer, and HPV oncoproteins are being targeted by immunotherapies. Although these treatments show promising results in the clinic, many patients do not benefit or the durability is limited. In addition to HPV antigens, neoantigens derived from somatic mutations may also generate an effective immune response and represent an additional and distinct immunotherapy strategy against this and other HPV-associated cancers. To explore the landscape of neoantigens in cervix cancer, we predicted all possible mutated neopeptides in two large sequencing data sets and analyzed whether mutation and neoantigen load correlate with antigen presentation, infiltrating immune cell types, and a HPV-induced master regulator gene expression signature. We found that targetable neoantigens are detected in most tumors, and there are recurrent mutated peptides from known oncogenic driver genes (KRAS, MAPK1, PIK3CA, ERBB2, and ERBB3) that are predicted to be potentially immunogenic. Our studies show that HPV-induced master regulators are not only associated with HPV load but may also play crucial roles in relation to mutation and neoantigen load, and also the immune microenvironment of the tumor. A subset of these HPV-induced master regulators positively correlated with expression of immune-suppressor molecules such as PD-L1, TGFB1, and IL-10 suggesting that they may be involved in abrogating antitumor response induced by the presence of mutations and neoantigens. Based on these results, we predict that HPV master regulators identified in our study might be potentially effective targets in cervical cancer

Topics: cervical cancer, neoantigens, human papillomavirus, master regulators, immunotherapy, Immunologic diseases. Allergy, RC581-607
Publisher: Frontiers Media S.A.
Year: 2017
DOI identifier: 10.3389/fimmu.2017.00689/full
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