The efficacy of combination treatment with elotuzumab and lenalidomide is dependent on crosstalk between natural killer cells, monocytes and myeloma cells
journal contributionposted on 2023-07-28, 06:29 authored by K Richardson, SP Keam, JJ Zhu, D Meyran, C D’Souza, S Macdonald, K Campbell, M Robbins, NA Bezman, K Todd, H Quach, DS Ritchie, SJ Harrison, HM Prince, JA Trapani, Misty JenkinsMisty Jenkins, PA Beavis, PK Darcy, PJ Neeson
Patients with refractory relapsed multiple myeloma respond to combination treatment with elotuzumab and lenalidomide. The mechanisms underlying this observation are not fully understood. Furthermore, biomarkers predictive of response have not been identified to date. To address these issues, we used a humanized myeloma mouse model and adoptive transfer of human natural killer (NK) cells to show that elotuzumab and lenalidomide treatment controlled myeloma growth, and this was mediated through CD16 on NK cells. In co-culture studies, we showed that peripheral blood mononuclear cells from a subset of patients with refractory relapsed multiple myeloma were effective killers of OPM2 myeloma cells when treated with elotuzumab and lenalidomide, and this was associated with significantly increased expression of CD54 on OPM2 cells. Furthermore, elotuzumab- and lenalidomide-induced OPM2 cell killing and increased OPM2 CD54 expression were dependent on both monocytes and NK cells, and these effects were not mediated by soluble factors alone. At the transcript level, elotuzumab and lenalidomide treatment significantly increased OPM2 myeloma cell expression of genes for trafficking and adhesion molecules, NK cell activation ligands and antigen presentation molecules. In conclusion, our findings suggest that multiple myeloma patients require elotuzumab- and lenalidomide-mediated upregulation of CD54 on autologous myeloma cells, in combination with NK cells and monocytes to mediate an effective anti-tumor response. Furthermore, our data suggest that increased myeloma cell CD54 expression levels could be a powerful predictive biomarker for response to elotuzumab and lenalidomide treatment.