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Publications (2)7.77 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Gene gun immunization, i.e., bombardment of skin with DNA-coated particles, is an efficient method for the administration of DNA vaccines. Direct transfection of APC or cross-presentation of exogenous Ag acquired from transfected nonimmune cells enables MHC-I-restricted activation of CD8(+) T cells. Additionally, MHC-II-restricted presentation of exogenous Ag activates CD4(+) Th cells. Being the principal APC in the epidermis, Langerhans cells (LC) seem ideal candidates to accomplish these functions. However, the dependence on LC of gene gun-induced immune reactions has not yet been demonstrated directly. This was primarily hampered by difficulties to discriminate the contributions of LC from those of other dermal dendritic cells. To address this problem, we have used Langerin-diphtheria toxin receptor knockin mice that allow for selective inducible ablation of LC. LC deficiency, even over the entire duration of experiments, did not affect any of the gene gun-induced immune functions examined, including proliferation of CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells, IFN-gamma secretion by spleen cells, Ab production, CTL activity, and development of protective antitumor immunity. Together, our data show that gene gun immunization is capable of inducing humoral and cell-mediated immune reactions independently of LC.
    The Journal of Immunology 08/2007; 179(2):886-93. · 5.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Recent investigations have shown that proteins, including Bet v 1a, are nitrated by exposure to polluted urban air. We have investigated immunogenic and allergenic properties of in vitro nitrated allergens in in vivo models. Untreated and nitrated samples of ovalbumin or Bet v 1a were compared for their ability to stimulate proliferation and cytokine secretion in splenocytes from DO11.10 or from sensitized BALB/c mice, and for their ability to induce specific immunoglobulin (Ig)G1, IgG2a and IgE in sensitized mice. Additionally, sera from birch pollen-allergic individuals were analysed for IgE and IgG specific for nitrated Bet v 1a. Upon splenocyte stimulation with nitrated as compared with unmodified allergens, proliferation as well as interleukin 5 and interferon-gamma production were enhanced. Sera of mice sensitized with nitrated allergens showed elevated levels of specific IgE, IgG1 and IgG2a, compared with sera from mice sensitized with unmodified allergens. Moreover, cross-reactivity of antibodies against unrelated, nitrated allergens was observed in mice. We also found higher amounts of functional, specific IgE against nitrated than against untreated Bet v 1a in sera from birch pollen-allergic patients. Our findings suggest that nitration enhances allergic responses, which may contribute to an increased prevalence of allergic diseases in polluted urban environments.
    International Archives of Allergy and Immunology 02/2006; 141(3):265-75. · 2.25 Impact Factor