• Bone marrow CD8+ T-cell differentiation states play a crucial role in acute myeloid leukemia patients response to therapy.

  • scRNAseq/TCRseq analysis reveals developmental dichotomic programs and clonal expansion in relation to response to induction therapy in AML.

The interplay between T-cell states of differentiation, dysfunction, and treatment response in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) remains unclear. Here, we leveraged a multimodal approach encompassing high-dimensional flow cytometry and single-cell transcriptomics and found that early memory CD8+ T cells are associated with therapy response and exhibit a bifurcation into two distinct terminal end states. One state is enriched for markers of activation, whereas the other expresses NK-like and senescence markers. The skewed clonal differentiation trajectory towards CD8+ senescence was also a hallmark indicative of therapy resistance. We validated these findings by generating an AML CD8+ single-cell atlas integrating our data and other independent datasets. Finally, our analysis revealed that an imbalance between CD8+ early memory and senescent-like cells is linked to AML treatment refractoriness and poor survival. Our study provides crucial insights into the dynamics of CD8+ T-cell differentiation and advances our understanding of CD8+ T-cell dysfunction in AML.-

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