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New data on an association between vitiligo and immune response against melanoma


Researchers at Radboud University Medical Centre Nijmegen in the Netherlands prospectively followed three patients with melanoma who developed vitiligo after receiving immunotherapy with autologous monocyte-derived dendritic cells loaded with HLA-A2.1 compatible tumor antigens gp100 and tyrosinase. Immunohistochemical analysis of the vitiligo lesions in all three patients showed perilesional infiltration of CD8-positive T-cells specific for one or more gp100 and tyrosinase HLA-A2.1 epitopes. These infiltrating lymphocytes were also found in the tumor lesions and produced interferon-gamma and IL-2 when stimulated with gp100- or tyrosinase-expressing target cells. These results suggest that vitiligo is a marker of immunity against melanoma (Jacobs, J.F. et al. Cancer Immunol Immunother 2009, 58[1]: 145).

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