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Mol Immunol. 2009 Dec;47(2-3):164-74. doi: 10.1016/j.molimm.2009.09.026. Epub 2009 Oct 8.

Targeting glycan modified OVA to murine DC-SIGN transgenic dendritic cells enhances MHC class I and II presentation.

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  • 1Department of Molecular Cell Biology and Immunology, VU Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


Dendritic cells have gained much interest in the field of anti-cancer vaccine development because of their central function in immune regulation. One of the receptors that facilitate DC-specific targeting of antigens is the DC-specific C-type lectin DC-SIGN. Although DC-SIGN is specifically expressed on human DCs, its murine homologue is not present on any murine DC subsets, which makes in vivo evaluation of potential DC-SIGN targeting vaccines very difficult. Here we describe the use of DC-SIGN transgenic mice, as a good model system to evaluate DC-SIGN targeting vaccines. We demonstrate that glycan modification of OVA with DC-SIGN targeting glycans, targets antigen specifically to bone marrow (BM)** derived DCs and splenic DCs. Glycan modification of OVA with Lewis X or Lewis B oligosaccharides, that target DC-SIGN transgenic DCs, resulted in efficient 10-fold induction of OT-II compared to unmodified OVA. Interestingly, glycan modified OVA proteins were significantly cross-presented to OT-I T cells by wild type DC, 10-fold more than native OVA, and the expression of DC-SIGN further enhanced this cross-presentation. Targeting of glycosylated OVA was neither accompanied with any DC maturation, nor the production of inflammatory or anti-inflammatory cytokines. Thus, we conclude that glycan modification of antigens and targeting to DC-SIGN enhance both CD4 and CD8 T cell responses. Furthermore, our data demonstrate that DC-SIGN transgenic mice are valuable tool for optimisation and efficiency testing of DC vaccination strategies that are designed to target in particular the human DC-SIGN receptor.

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