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J Immunol. 2007 May 1;178(9):5839-47.

Vesicular stomatitis virus glycoprotein displaying retrovirus-like particles induce a type I IFN receptor-dependent switch to neutralizing IgG antibodies.

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  • 1Division of Immunology, Paul-Ehrlich-Institut, Langen, Germany.


Vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) infection rapidly induces IFN-alphabeta that confers initial survival, whereas long-term protection is mediated by neutralizing IgG responses. Because coadministration of IFN-alphabeta can enhance Ab responses against soluble Ags, we addressed whether virus-induced IFN-alphabeta also had an impact on the induction of neutralizing Ab responses. To this end, we generated apathogenic retrovirus-like particles (VLP) displaying the VSV gp (VLP-VSV). Reminiscent of live VSV, VLP-VSV induced VSV-neutralizing IgM responses that switched to IgG in a T help-dependent manner. In type I IFN receptor-deficient (IFNAR(-/-)) mice, VLP-VSV injection elicited neutralizing IgM, whereas the IgG switch was absent. The lack of subclass switch was associated with a reduced germinal center reaction. Conditional knockout mice with a lymphocyte-specific IFNAR ablation showed normal Ab responses against VLP-VSV, as well as against live VSV. Thus, IFNAR triggering critically promoted the T help-dependent subclass switch of virus-neutralizing Ab responses against VLP-VSV. Interestingly, in the context of VLP-VSV as well as VSV immunization, IFNAR triggering of B lymphocytes did not play a critical role.

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