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Vaccine. 2012 Nov 26;30(50):7179-86. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2012.10.018. Epub 2012 Oct 15.

Delivery of antigenic candidates by a DNA/MVA heterologous approach elicits effector CD8(+)T cell mediated immunity against Trypanosoma cruzi.

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  • 1Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX 77555-1070, United States.


In this study, we have characterized the immune mechanisms elicited by antigenic candidates, TcG2 and TcG4, delivered by a DNA-prime/MVA-boost approach, and evaluated the host responses to Trypanosoma cruzi infection in C57BL/6 mice. Immunization of mice with antigenic candidates elicited antigen-specific, high-avidity, trypanolytic antibody response (IgG2b>IgG1) and CD8(+)T cells that exhibited type-1 cytolytic effector (CD8(+)CD107a(+)IFN-γ(+)Perforin(+)) phenotype. The extent of TcG2-dependent type 1 B and T cell immunity was higher than that noted in TcG4-immunized mice, and expanded accordingly in response to challenge infection with T. cruzi. The progression of chronic phase in immunized mice was associated with persistence of IgGs, 55-90% reduction in the frequency of proinflammatory (IFN-γ(+) or TNF-α(+)) CD8(+)T cells, and an increase or emergence of immunoregulatory (IL-10(+)) CD4/CD8 T cells. The tissue parasitism, infiltration of inflammatory infiltrate, parasite persistence, and fibrosis were decreased by 82-92% in heart and skeletal muscle of immunized/chronically infected mice. Control mice exhibited a significantly low antibody response, consistent activation of effector CD8(+)T cells dominated by pro-inflammatory phenotype and mixed cytokine profile (IFN-γ+TNF-α>IL-4+IL-10), parasite persistence and pathologic damage in chagasic hearts. We conclude that delivery of TcG2 or TcG4 by DNA-rMVA approach elicits effective antibody and CD8(+)T cell mediated immunity against T. cruzi and Chagas disease. The emergence of type 2 cytokine and T cell response in chronic phase was indicative of prevention of clinical disease.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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