Severe combined immunodeficiency (scid) mice develop EBV (+)B cell tumors after infusion of EBV(+)B cells or of B cells and EBV. In this study, scid mice were infused with B cell lines derived from three patients who developed a B lymphocyte proliferative disorder after bone marrow or organ transplantation. Intraperitoneal injection of 5 x 10(6) B cells induced tumor growth in all mice, leading to death within 60 d. Human B cells were identified in spleen and bone marrow by means of immunofluorescence or EBV genome amplification, and human IgM was detected in serum. Infusion of murine monoclonal antibodies specific for human B cell membrane antigens CD21, CD24, and CD23 was effective in 80% of animals, against two of the three cell lines preventing tumor development or inducing remission according to the time of treatment. The effect was antibody dose dependent and was optimal with four intravenous infusions of at least 0.1 mg 4 d apart. Human IgM in serum and human B cells in spleen and bone marrow became undetectable when peritoneal tumors regressed completely. Infusions of IgG1 isotype-matched anti-CD4 antibody or anti-CD3 antibody had no effect. Tumors developed or recurred in 50% of these animals injected with one of the B cell line 3 mo after treatment was stopped. The same anti-CD21 and anti-CD24 antibodies had been used to treat the three patients, and shown similar degrees of effectiveness as in the scid mouse model. These results indicate that scid mice may be suitable for assessing therapeutic approaches to human B cell proliferation.
A Durandy, N Brousse, F Rozenberg, G De Saint Basile, A M Fischer, A Fischer