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PLoS One. 2007 Nov 14;2(11):e1162.

"Negative vaccination" by specific CD4 T cell tolerisation enhances virus-specific protective antibody responses.

Author information

1
Institute of Experimental Immunology, Department of Pathology, University Hospital Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland. karlslang@gmail.com

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Cooperation of CD4+ T helper cells with specific B cells is crucial for protective vaccination against pathogens by inducing long-lived neutralizing antibody responses. During infection with persistence-prone viruses, prolonged virus replication correlates with low neutralizing antibody responses. We recently described that a viral mutant of lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV), which lacks a T helper epitope, counterintuitively induced an enhanced protective antibody response. Likewise, partial depletion of the CD4+ T cell compartment by using anti-CD4 antibodies enhanced protective antibodies.

PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:

Here we have developed a protocol to selectively reduce the CD4+ T cell response against viral CD4+ T cell epitopes. We demonstrate that in vivo treatment with LCMV-derived MHC-II peptides induced non-responsiveness of specific CD4+ T cells without affecting CD4+ T cell reactivity towards other antigens. This was associated with accelerated virus-specific neutralizing IgG-antibody responses. In contrast to a complete absence of CD4+ T cell help, tolerisation did not impair CD8+ T cell responses.

CONCLUSIONS:

This result reveals a novel "negative vaccination" strategy where specific CD4+ T cell unresponsiveness may be used to enhance the delayed protective antibody responses in chronic virus infections.

PMID:
18000535
PMCID:
PMC2048666
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0001162
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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