NOTCH-Induced MDSC Recruitment after oHSV Virotherapy in CNS Cancer Models Modulates Antitumor Immunotherapy

Yoshihiro Otani, Ji Young Yoo, Cole T. Lewis, Samantha Chao, Jessica Swanner, Toshihiko Shimizu, Jin Muk Kang, Sara A. Murphy, Kimberly Rivera-Caraballo, Bangxing Hong, Joseph C. Glorioso, Hiroshi Nakashima, Sean E. Lawler, Yeshavanth Banasavadi-Siddegowda, John D. Heiss, Yuanqing Yan, Guangsheng Pei, Michael A. Caligiuri, Zhongming Zhao, E. Antonio ChioccaJianhua Yu, Balveen Kaur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Purpose: Oncolytic herpes simplex virus-1 (oHSV) infection of brain tumors activates NOTCH, however the consequences of NOTCH on oHSV-induced immunotherapy is largely unknown. Here we evaluated the impact of NOTCH blockade on virus-induced immunotherapy. Experimental Design: RNA sequencing (RNA-seq), TCGA data analysis, flow cytometry, Luminex- and ELISA-based assays, brain tumor animal models, and serum analysis of patients with recurrent glioblastoma (GBM) treated with oHSV was used to evaluate the effect of NOTCH signaling on virus-induced immunotherapy. Results: TCGA data analysis of patients with grade IV glioma and oHSV treatment of experimental brain tumors in mice showed that NOTCH signaling significantly correlated with a higher myeloid cell infiltration. Immunofluorescence staining and RNA-seq uncovered a significant induction of Jag1 (NOTCH ligand) expression in infiltrating myeloid cells upon oHSV infection. Jag1-expressing macrophages further spread NOTCH activation in the tumor microenvironment (TME). NOTCH-activated macrophages increased the secretion of CCL2, which further amplified myeloid-derived suppressor cells. CCL2 and IL10 induction was also observed in serum of patients with recurrent GBM treated with oHSV (rQnestin34.5; NCT03152318). Pharmacologic blockade of NOTCH signaling rescued the oHSV-induced immunosuppressive TME and activated a CD8-dependent antitumor memory response, resulting in a therapeutic benefit. Conclusions: NOTCH-induced immunosuppressive myeloid cell recruitment limited antitumor immunity. Translationally, these findings support the use of NOTCH inhibition in conjunction with oHSV therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1460-1473
Number of pages14
JournalClinical Cancer Research
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 1 2022
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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