Ultrarapid lytic granule release from CTLs activates Ca2+-dependent synaptic resistance pathways in melanoma cells

Liza Filali, Marie Pierre Puissegur, Kevin Cortacero, Sylvain Cussat-Blanc, Roxana Khazen, Nathalie Van Acker, François Xavier Frenois, Arnaud Abreu, Laurence Lamant, Nicolas Meyer, Béatrice Vergier, Sabina Müller, Brienne McKenzie*, Salvatore Valitutti*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Human cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) exhibit ultrarapid lytic granule secretion, but whether melanoma cells mobilize defense mechanisms with commensurate rapidity remains unknown. We used single-cell time-lapse microscopy to offer high spatiotemporal resolution analyses of subcellular events in melanoma cells upon CTL attack. Target cell perforation initiated an intracellular Ca2+ wave that propagated outward from the synapse within milliseconds and triggered lysosomal mobilization to the synapse, facilitating membrane repair and conferring resistance to CTL induced cytotoxicity. Inhibition of Ca2+ flux and silencing of synaptotagmin VII limited synaptic lysosomal exposure and enhanced cytotoxicity. Multiplexed immunohistochemistry of patient melanoma nodules combined with automated image analysis showed that melanoma cells facing CD8+ CTLs in the tumor periphery or peritumoral area exhibited significant lysosomal enrichment. Our results identified synaptic Ca2+ entry as the definitive trigger for lysosomal deployment to the synapse upon CTL attack and highlighted an unpredicted defensive topology of lysosome distribution in melanoma nodules.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbereabk3234
JournalScience advances
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022


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