Journal of Clinical Immunology

, Volume 31, Issue 1, pp 80–88 | Cite as

Nicotine Stimulated Dendritic Cells Could Achieve Anti-Tumor Effects in Mouse Lung and Liver Cancer

  • Feng Guang Gao
  • Hai Tao Li
  • Zhi Jing Li
  • Jian Ren Gu



Our previous studies have revealed that nicotine-treated immature dendritic cells (imDCs) have anti-tumor effects in murine lymphoma models. The present study is to explore the preventive and therapeutic anti-tumor effects of nicotine-treated imDCs in murine lung and liver cancer.

Materials and Methods

To address this objection, bone marrow-derived imDCs were firstly stimulated by nicotine in vitro and the expressions of CD80, CD86, CD40, CD11b, MHC class I and II were determined by flow cytometry. Then, DCs-dependent tumor-lysate-specific T cell proliferation, IL-12(p40+p70) secretion were determined by BrdU cell proliferation assay and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, respectively. The anti-tumor effects of such imDCs were further explored by intraperitoneal transfer against tumor challenge or implantation. By using kinase inhibitors, the mechanism of nicotine upregulating CD80 was finally explored by flow cytometry.


The results showed that: firstly, nicotine could upregulate the expressions of CD80, CD86, CD40,CD11b, MHC class I and II molecules in imDCs. Secondly, nicotine could promote imDCs-dependent T cell priming and IL-12 secretion. Most importantly, systemic transfer of ex vivo nicotine-stimulated imDCs, which enhanced CD80 expression through PI3K activation, could reveal preventive and effectively therapeutic effects on tumor development.


Ex vivo nicotine stimulation can significantly improve imDCs efficacy for adaptive therapy of cancer. Nicotine-treated imDCs might be considered as a potential candidate for therapeutic tumor immunotherapy for lung and liver cancer.


Nicotine immunity dendritic cells vaccination immunotherapy 



immature dendritic cells


dendritic cells


nicotinic acetylcholine receptor


Lewis lung cancer


mitogen-activated protein kinase








tubocurarine chloride


flow cytometry


mixed lymphocyte reactions



The project was supported by the Natural Science Foundation of Fujian Province of China (No.2008J0112) and the grant from the National Laboratory for Oncogenes and Related Genes of China (90-08-02). We thank Professor Cao XT (Second Military Medical University, Shanghai, China) and Chen YH (University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA) for kindly providing Hepa 1-6 cell lines and polishing manuscripts. Also, we thank Mingxia Yan, Jinhua Su, and Ming Yao for excellent animal care. JR Gu designed the research and polished the paper. FG Gao and HT Li performed research and analyzed data. ZJ Li contributed to laboratory support.

Disclosure Statement

The authors declare no competing financial interests.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Feng Guang Gao
    • 1
    • 2
  • Hai Tao Li
    • 1
  • Zhi Jing Li
    • 1
  • Jian Ren Gu
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Basic Medicine Science, Medical CollegeXiamen UniversityXiamenPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory for Oncogenes and Related GenesCancer Institute of Shanghai Jiao Tong UniversityShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China

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