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Immunity. 2001 Apr;14(4):461-70.

Type i interferons potently enhance humoral immunity and can promote isotype switching by stimulating dendritic cells in vivo.

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  • 1The Edward Jenner Institute for Vaccine Research, Compton, Newbury, Berkshire RG20 7NN, England.


Type I interferons (IFN-I) are rapidly induced following infection and play a key role in nonspecific inhibition of virus replication. Here we have investigated the effects of IFN-I on the generation of antigen-specific antibody responses. The data show that IFN-I potently enhance the primary antibody response to a soluble protein, stimulating the production of all subclasses of IgG, and induce long-lived antibody production and immunological memory. In addition, endogenous production of IFN-I was shown to be essential for the adjuvant activity of CFA. Finally, IFN-I enhanced the antibody response and induced isotype switching when dendritic cells were the only cell type responding to IFN-I. The data reveal the potent adjuvant activity of IFN-I and their important role in linking innate and adaptive immunity.

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