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Balancing the CD38 Expression on Effector and Target Cells in Daratumumab-Mediated NK Cell ADCC against Multiple Myeloma

Abstract : Multiple myeloma (MM) is an incurable cancer characterized by the proliferation and accumulation of monoclonal plasma cells in the bone marrow. The monoclonal anti-CD38 daratumumab has taken a central place in the different treatment regimens for newly diagnosed and relapsed, refractory myeloma. In this study, we correlated the NK cell-mediated antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) and potential fratricide induced by daratumumab with CD38-expression levels on both effector and target cells. We show that CD38 expression can be modulated by adding all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) or interferon-α to MM cells to further fine-tune these effects. In addition, we observed that ADCC becomes inefficient when fratricide occurs and both ADCC and fratricide depend on the balance between CD38 expression on effector and target cells. However, the addition of adjuvants (retinoic acid or interferon-α) to myeloma cells or the inhibition of fratricide using a CD38-blocking nanobody on NK-cells can reverse this balance towards ADCC and thus promote lysis of target cells by ADCC. ATRA and interferon-α increased the CD38 expression at the surface of MM cells about three-fold and two-fold, respectively. This increase was of interest for MM cells with low CD38 expression, that became susceptible to daratumumab-mediated ADCC after preincubation. A CD38-blocking nanobody prevented the binding of daratumumab to these NK-cells and blunted the fratricidal effect on effector NK cells. In conclusion, our study highlights the importance of a balanced CD38 expression on target and effector cells and attempts to alter this balance will affect the susceptibility of MM cells towards daratumumab-mediated ADCC.
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https://www.hal.inserm.fr/inserm-03290143
Contributor : Elizabeth Bernardo <>
Submitted on : Monday, July 19, 2021 - 11:04:34 AM
Last modification on : Friday, July 30, 2021 - 3:37:37 AM

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Margaux Lejeune, Elodie Duray, Matthias Peipp, Béatrice Clémenceau, Frédéric Baron, et al.. Balancing the CD38 Expression on Effector and Target Cells in Daratumumab-Mediated NK Cell ADCC against Multiple Myeloma. Cancers, MDPI, 2021, 13 (12), pp.3072. ⟨10.3390/cancers13123072⟩. ⟨inserm-03290143⟩

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