Postablation modulation after single high-dose radiation therapy improves tumor control via enhanced immunomodulation

Talicia Savage, Sanjay Pandey, Chandan Guha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations


Purpose: Radiotherapy (RT) is frequently used for local control of solid tumors using equal dose per fraction. Recently, single high-dose radiation has been used for ablation of solid tumors. In this report, we provide a novel immunological basis for radiation dose fractionation consisting of a single high-dose radiotherapy, followed by postablation modulation (PAM) with four daily low-dose fractions (22 Gy þ 0.5 Gy × 4) to reprogram the tumor microenvironment by diminishing immune suppression, enabling infiltration of effector cells and increasing efficacy of tumor control. Experimental Design: Palpable 3LL and 4T1 tumors in C57Bl/ 6 and Balb/c mice were irradiated with the Small-Animal Radiation Research Platform irradiator, and tumor growth and survival were monitored. Immunomodulation of tumor and immune cells in vitro and in vivo characterization of tumor-infiltrating immune effector cells were performed by FACS. For systemic application of PAM-RT, whole-lung irradiation was administered in 4T1-bearing Balb/c mice. Results: We report significant tumor growth delays and increased survival in 3LL tumor–bearing mice with PAM. Primary tumor PAM-RT increased infiltration of immune effector cells and decreased Treg in irradiated tumors and secondary lymphoid organs. In a model of murine metastatic breast cancer (4T1), we demonstrated that systemic PAM-RT to the whole lung, 12 days after primary tumor ablative radiotherapy, increased survival with suppression of pulmonary metastases. Conclusions: We provide a novel immunologic basis for radiation dose fractionation consisting of a single high dose of radiotherapy followed by daily low-dose PAM-RT fractionation to improve the immunogenic potential of ablative radiotherapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)910-921
Number of pages12
JournalClinical Cancer Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Feb 15 2020


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

Cite this