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In previous reports, we have shown that PBI-1393 (formerly BCH-1393), N,N-Dimethylaminopurine pentoxycarbonyl D-arginine, stimulates cytotoxic T-lymphocyte (CTL) responses both in vitro and in vivo in normal immune status and immunosuppressed mice. Additionally, PBI-1393 was tested for anticancer activity in syngeneic mouse experimental tumor models and it displayed significant inhibition of tumor outgrowths when given in combination with sub-therapeutic doses of cytotoxic drugs (cyclophosphamide, 5-fluorouracil, doxorubicin and cis-platinum). However, the mechanism of action of PBI-1393 was still unknown. Here, we report that PBI-1393 enhances IL-2 and IFN-gamma production in human activated T cells by 51% and 46% respectively. PBI-1393 increases also IL-2 and IFN-gamma mRNA expression as shown by RT-PCR. The physiological relevance of IL-2 and IFN-gamma gene modulation by PBI-1393 is illustrated by the advantageous increase of T cell proliferation (39+/-0.3% above control) and human CTL response against prostate (PC-3) cancer cells (42+/-0.03%). The enhancement of human T cell proliferation and CTL activation by PBI-1393 demonstrates that this compound potentiates the immune response and in this regard, it could be used as an alternative approach to IL-2 and/or IFN-gamma therapy against cancer.


Mustapha Allam, Nathalie Julien, Boulos Zacharie, Christopher Penney, Lyne Gagnon. Enhancement of Th1 type cytokine production and primary T cell activation by PBI-1393. Clinical immunology (Orlando, Fla.). 2007 Dec;125(3):318-27

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PMID: 17827067

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