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Immunol Cell Biol. 2002 Aug;80(4):346-50.

Comparative affects of plasmid-encoded interleukin 12 and interleukin 18 on the protective efficacy of DNA vaccination against Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

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Centenary Institute of Cancer Medicine and Cell Biology, Newtown, New South Wales, Australia.


Protective immunity against Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection requires the induction and maintenance of mycobacteria-specific, IFN-gamma-secreting CD4+ and CD8+ T lymphocytes. The development of Th1-like T cells is promoted by the early secretion and synergistic action of interleukin (IL)-12 and IL-18. This study compares the effects of plasmid-encoded IL-12 and IL-18 on the immunogenicity and protective efficacy of a DNA vaccine expressing the M. tuberculosis-secreted protein antigen 85B (DNA-85B). Co-immunization with either IL-12- or IL-18-expressing plasmids augmented the IFN-gamma-secreting T-cell response, and the maximum effect was observed with plasmids encoding both cytokines. Further the IL-12, but not the IL-18-expressing plasmid, significantly increased the protective efficacy of DNA-85B against pulmonary M. tuberculosis infection. Therefore co-administration of plasmid-encoded cytokines provides a potential method for optimizing the protective efficacy of DNA vaccination against tuberculosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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