Abstract: Reconstitution of T cell repertoire after allogeneic stem cell transplantation is a long and often incomplete process. As a result, reactivation of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is a frequent complication that may be treated by adoptive transfer of donor-derived EBV-specific T cells. We generated donor-derived EBV-specific T cells by peptide stimulation and adoptively transferred them to a patient with angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma (AITL), who had developed persisting high titers of EBV concomitant to relapse after transplantation. T cell receptor beta (TCRβ) deep sequencing showed that the T cell repertoire of the patient early after transplantation (day 60) was strongly reduced and only very low numbers of EBV-specific T cells were detectable. Manufacturing and in vitro expansion of donor-derived EBV-specific T cells resulted in enrichment of EBV epitope-specific, HLA-restricted T cells. Monitoring after adoptive transfer revealed that the dominant TCR sequences from peptide-stimulated T cells persisted long-term and established an EBV-specific TCR clonotype repertoire in the host, with many of the EBV-specific TCRs present in the donor. This reconstituted repertoire was associated with immunological control of EBV and with lack of further AITL relapse.

Journal Link: 10.1101/2021.12.16.473087 Journal Link: Publisher Website Journal Link: Download PDF Journal Link: Google Scholar