Expansion of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes with substantial
stem cell properties from vulvar cancer
Tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (TIL) therapy has been clinically proved as a promising therapeutic approach for patients with solid tumor. TIL therapy could effectively control tumor growth in cervical cancer as indicated by a phase 2 pivotal trial with an objective response rate of 44.4%. Vulvar cancer is believed to share a similar biological and immunological phenotype with cervical cancer. However, the therapeutic potential of TIL in vulvar cancer remains to be explored. In this study, we described a manufacturing procedure that can expand clinical-scale TILs from both vulvar cancer and cervical cancer with a high success rate. Characterization of the phenotype of TIL populations showed that TILs from vulvar cancer are prone to maintaining a higher percentage of progenitor-like phenotype and have stronger tumor-killing capacity compared to TILs from cervical cancer. TCR clonality analysis indicated that all TIL samples have more enriched TCR clones than PBMC, which might be expanded during anti-tumor responses and tend to be patient specific. Thus, our study provides a feasible method of TIL preparation from and a potential new therapeutic strategy for vulvar cancer patients.