Preneoplastic lesions carry many of the antigenic targets found in cancer cells but often exhibit prolonged dormancy. Understanding how the host response to premalignancy is maintained and altered during malignant transformation is needed to prevent cancer. In order to understand the immune microenvironment in precursor monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) and myeloma, we analyzed bone marrow immune cells from 12 healthy donors and 26 MGUS/myeloma patients by mass cytometry and concurrently profiled transcriptomes of 42,606 single immune cells from these bone marrows. Compared to age-matched healthy donors, memory T cells from both MGUS and myeloma patients exhibit greater terminal-effector differentiation. However, memory T cells in MGUS show greater enrichment of stem-like TCF1/7hi cells. Clusters of T cells with stem-like and tissue-residence genes were also found to be enriched in MGUS by single-cell transcriptome analysis. Early changes in both NK and myeloid cells were also observed in MGUS. Enrichment of stem-like T cells correlated with a distinct genomic profile of myeloid cells and levels of Dickkopf-1 in bone-marrow plasma. These data describe the landscape of changes in both innate and adaptive immunity in premalignancy and suggest that attrition of the bone-marrow-resident T cell compartment due to loss of stem-like cells may underlie loss of immune surveillance in myeloma.
Jithendra Kini Bailur, Samuel S. McCachren, Deon B. Doxie, Mahesh Shrestha, Katherine E. Pendleton, Ajay K. Nooka, Natalia Neparidze, Terri L. Parker, Noffar Bar, Jonathan L. Kaufman, Craig C. Hofmeister, Lawrence H. Boise, Sagar Lonial, Melissa L. Kemp, Kavita M. Dhodapkar, Madhav V. Dhodapkar