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Nature. 2009 Mar 12;458(7235):206-10. doi: 10.1038/nature07662. Epub 2008 Dec 10.

Enhancing SIV-specific immunity in vivo by PD-1 blockade.

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  • 1Emory Vaccine Center, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia 30322, USA.

Abstract

Chronic immunodeficiency virus infections are characterized by dysfunctional cellular and humoral antiviral immune responses. As such, immune modulatory therapies that enhance and/or restore the function of virus-specific immunity may protect from disease progression. Here we investigate the safety and immune restoration potential of blockade of the co-inhibitory receptor programmed death 1 (PD-1) during chronic simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) infection in macaques. We demonstrate that PD-1 blockade using an antibody to PD-1 is well tolerated and results in rapid expansion of virus-specific CD8 T cells with improved functional quality. This enhanced T-cell immunity was seen in the blood and also in the gut, a major reservoir of SIV infection. PD-1 blockade also resulted in proliferation of memory B cells and increases in SIV envelope-specific antibody. These improved immune responses were associated with significant reductions in plasma viral load and also prolonged the survival of SIV-infected macaques. Blockade was effective during the early (week 10) as well as late ( approximately week 90) phases of chronic infection even under conditions of severe lymphopenia. These results demonstrate enhancement of both cellular and humoral immune responses during a pathogenic immunodeficiency virus infection by blocking a single inhibitory pathway and identify a novel therapeutic approach for control of human immunodeficiency virus infections.

PMID:
19078956
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2753387
Free PMC Article

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