Characterization of a Hypoallergenic Recombinant Bet v 1 Variant as a Candidate for Allergen-Specific Immunotherapy

ArticleinInternational Archives of Allergy and Immunology 145(3):193-206 · February 2008with52 Reads
DOI: 10.1159/000109288 · Source: PubMed
Abstract
Recombinant allergens and especially their hypoallergenic variants are promising candidates for a more effective and safer specific immunotherapy. Physicochemical and immunological characteristics of a folding variant of recombinant Bet v 1 (rBet v 1-FV) were investigated in comparison to natural Bet v 1 (nBet v 1) and the correctly folded recombinant Bet v 1 (rBet v 1-WT) by SDS-PAGE, size exclusion chromatography, multi-angle light scattering, circular dichroism, immunoblotting and enzyme allergosorbent test inhibition assay for detection of IgE reactivity and ELISA with Bet v 1-specific monoclonal antibodies. The functional IgE reactivity of the different Bet v 1 proteins was investigated using basophil activation in terms of CD203c expression and histamine release. T cell reactivity was investigated using T cell lines raised from birch pollen-allergic subjects against nBet v 1. Immunogenicity was investigated in mice. Physicochemical characterization revealed purity, homogeneity and monomeric properties of rBet v 1-FV. Unlike nBet v 1 and rBet v 1-WT, rBet v 1-FV showed almost no IgE binding in immunoblots. The reduction of allergenicity was further proved by IgE-binding inhibition assays, basophil activation and histamine release. T cell reactivity was completely conserved, as demonstrated by proliferation of Bet v 1-specific T cell lines with multiple epitope specificities. rBet v 1-FV showed strong immunogenicity in mice. Due to its reduced IgE reactivity and decreased capacity to activate basophils, but retained T cell reactivity and strong immunogenicity, rBet v 1-FV proved to be a very promising candidate for specific immunotherapy in birch pollen-allergic subjects.
    • "Recombinant preparations are an ideal basis for development of diagnostic and therapeutic preparations, since they are molecularly defined and can be produced in high purity with consistent quality, thereby circumventing many of the difficulties associated with natural allergen extracts and their standardization. In order to reduce the risk of IgE-mediated therapyinduced side effects a folding variant of recombinant Bet v 1 (rBet v 1-FV), the major birch pollen allergen, has been developed [2]. This is the first report of a randomized, controlled, proof of concept study comparing two pre-seasonal treatment courses of SCIT with either rBet v 1-FV or an approved native birch pollen depot extract. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pollen extracts and chemically modified allergoids are used successfully in allergen immunotherapy (AIT). Recombinant extracts offer potential advantages with respect to pharmaceutical quality, standardization and dosing. A hypoallergenic recombinant folding variant of the major birch pollen allergen (rBet v 1-FV) was compared with an established native birch preparation. A pre-seasonal, randomized, actively controlled phase II study was performed in birch pollen allergic rhino-conjunctivitis with or without asthma, GINA I/ II. 51 patients (24 rBet v 1-FV, 27 native extract) started therapy with subcutaneous allergen immunotherapy (SCIT). Primary end-point was a combined symptom medication score (SMS), changes in nasal provocation test, visual rating score and specific antibody responses secondary end-points. After one pre-seasonal treatment course the combined SMS was 5.86 (median; IQR: 14.02) for the rBet v 1-FV group versus 12.40 (median; IQR: 9.32) for the comparator during the three weeks pollen season (p = 0.330). After treatment in the second year, scores were 3.00 (median; IQR: 6.50) and 2.93 (4.86) respectively. Allergen tolerance in a nasal provocation test improved to a comparable extent in both groups. Significant increases in birch pollen-specific IgG1 and IgG4 were observed in both treatment groups following the first treatment phase and remained significantly raised until the end of the study. In this first in man, proof of concept phase II trial no statistical difference between rBet v 1-FV and an established natural pollen extract could be observed. rBet v 1-FV could be administered in higher doses than the native protein with no increase in adverse effects. The study was registered in clinicalTrials.gov (NCT00266526).
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2015
    • "However, heterologous expression and purification of rBet v 1 might produce a quantitatively unknown fraction of misfolded and thus nonfunctional (non-IgE binding) rBet v 1. In this regard it has been recently shown that protein conformation of rBet v 1 and thus IgE binding capacity is greatly affected by the conditions used for protein purification [37,38] . Ignorance of these phenomena might lead to false estimates and correlations of the IgE binding potency of rBet v 1 preparations. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background Recombinant Bet v 1a (rBet v 1a) has been used in allergy research for more than three decades, including clinical application of so-called hypoallergens. Quantitative IgE binding to rBet v 1a depends on its native protein conformation, which might be compromised upon heterologous expression, purification, or mutational engineering of rBet v 1a. Objective To correlate experimental/theoretical comparisons of IgE binding of defined molar ratios of folded/misfolded recombinant Bet v 1a variants and to determine accuracy and precision of immuno- and physicochemical assays routinely used to assess the quality of recombinant allergen preparations. Methods rBet v 1a and its misfolded variant rBet v 1aS112P/R145P were heterologously expressed and purified from Escherichia coli. Structural integrities and oligomerisation of the recombinant allergens were evaluated by 1H-nuclear magnetic resonance (1H-NMR), circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy, and dynamic light scattering (DLS). IgE binding of defined combinations of rBet v 1a and rBet v 1aS112P/R145P was assessed using immunoblotting (IB), enzymelinked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and mediator release (MR) of humanized rat basophilic leukemia cells sensitized with serum IgE of subjects allergic to birch pollen. Experimental and theoretically expected results of the analyses were compared. Results 1H-NMR spectra of rBet v 1a and rBet v 1aS112P/R145P demonstrate a native and highly disordered protein conformations, respectively. The CD spectra suggested typical alpha-helical and beta-sheet secondary structure content of rBet v 1a and random coil for rBet v 1aS112P/R145P. The hydrodynamic radii (RH) of 2.49 ± 0.39 nm (rBet v 1a) and 3.1 ± 0.56 nm (rBet v 1aS112P/R145P) showed monomeric dispersion of both allergens in solution. Serum IgE of birch pollen allergic subjects bound to 0.1% rBet v 1a in the presence of 99.9% of non-IgE binding rBet v 1aS112P/R145P. Immunoblot analysis overestimated, whereas ELISA and mediator release assay underestimated the actual quantity of IgE-reactive rBet v 1a in mixtures of rBet v 1a/rBet v 1aS112P/R145P with a molar ratio of rBet v 1a � 10%. Conclusion Valid conclusions on quantitative IgE binding of recombinant Bet v 1a preparations depend on the accuracy and precision of physico- and immunochemical assays with which natively folded allergen is detected.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2015
    • "The functional IgE epitope identified in this study overlaps with the known binding site of the Bet v 1-specific murine monoclonal antibody BV16. The native protein conformation of Bet v 1 and highly likely other PR-10 allergens is critical for IgE interaction since i) neither sequential IgE binding peptides of Bet v 1 nor IgE binding truncated variants of Bet v 1 have been described so far [42] ii) a folding variant of Bet v 1 with native primary structure, but permanently altered secondary structure has very low IgE reactivity [43]. iii) several Bet v 1 variants with amino acid substitutions that induced an altered protein conformation showed reduced binding of serum IgE [7,44]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background Birch pollen-allergic subjects produce polyclonal cross-reactive IgE antibodies that mediate pollen-associated food allergies. The major allergen Bet v 1 and its homologs in plant foods bind IgE in their native protein conformation. Information on location, number and clinical relevance of IgE epitopes is limited. We addressed the use of an allergen-related protein model to identify amino acids critical for IgE binding of PR-10 allergens. Method Norcoclaurine synthase (NCS) from meadow rue is structurally homologous to Bet v 1 but does not bind Bet v 1-reactive IgE. NCS was used as the template for epitope grafting. NCS variants were tested with sera from 70 birch pollen allergic subjects and with monoclonal antibody BV16 reported to compete with IgE binding to Bet v 1. Results We generated an NCS variant (Δ29NCSN57/I58E/D60N/V63P/D68K) harboring an IgE epitope of Bet v 1. Bet v 1-type protein folding of the NCS variant was evaluated by 1H-15N-HSQC NMR spectroscopy. BV16 bound the NCS variant and 71% (50/70 sera) of our study population showed significant IgE binding. We observed IgE and BV16 cross-reactivity to the epitope presented by the NCS variant in a subgroup of Bet v 1-related allergens. Moreover BV16 blocked IgE binding to the NCS variant. Antibody cross-reactivity depended on a defined orientation of amino acids within the Bet v 1-type conformation. Conclusion Our system allows the evaluation of patient-specific epitope profiles and will facilitate both the identification of clinically relevant epitopes as biomarkers and the monitoring of therapeutic outcomes to improve diagnosis, prognosis, and therapy of allergies caused by PR-10 proteins.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2014
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