Evaluating Antibody-Dependent Cell-Mediated Cytotoxicity by Chromium Release Assay

  • Irene van der Haar Àvila
  • Patricia Marmol
  • Rolf Kiessling
  • Yago Pico de CoañaEmail author
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1913)


Antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity (ADCC) is a mechanism in which immune cell activation is induced by the cross-linking of CD16 with the Fc region of antibodies that at the same time bind specifically to cell surface antigens. ADCC stimulates the secretion of perforin, granzymes, and cytokines leading to lysis of the malignant cells. Natural killer (NK) cells express the CD16 receptor and can therefore be activated by ADCC to kill tumor cells. To study the cytotoxicity of NK cells against cancer cells, an ADCC-based assay is described: the chromium release assay. In this method, the antibody trastuzumab, which binds specifically to HER2-positive malignant cells, is used to trigger ADCC.

Key words

Antibody cell-mediated cytotoxicity Natural killer cells Trastuzumab Chromium release assay 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Irene van der Haar Àvila
    • 1
    • 2
  • Patricia Marmol
    • 3
  • Rolf Kiessling
    • 1
  • Yago Pico de Coaña
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Oncology-PathologyKarolinska InstituteStockholmSweden
  2. 2.Division of Tumor Biology and Immunology (B3)NKI-AvLAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Department of Cellular and Molecular BiologyKarolinska InstituteStockholmSweden

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