Zoe Waibler

Paul-Ehrlich-Institut, Langen, Hesse, Germany

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Publications (40)259.96 Total impact

  • Article: ID: 72

    No preview · Article · Nov 2015 · Cytokine
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    ABSTRACT: Importance: Although MERS-CoV has not yet acquired extensive distribution being mainly confined to the Arabic and Korean peninsulas, it could adapt to spread more readily amongst humans and thereby become pandemic. Therefore, the development of a vaccine is mandatory. The integration of antigen-coding genes into recombinant MV resulting in co-expression of MV and foreign antigens can efficiently be achieved. Thus, in combination with the excellent safety profile of the MV vaccine, recombinant MV seems to constitute an ideal vaccine platform. The present study shows that a recombinant MV expressing MERS-S was genetically stable and induced strong humoral and cellular immunity against MERS-CoV in vaccinated mice. Subsequent challenge experiments indicate protection of vaccinated animals, illustrating the potential of MV as vaccine platform with the potential to target emerging infections such as MERS-CoV.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2015 · Journal of Virology
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    ABSTRACT: To induce and trigger innate and adaptive immune responses, antigen-presenting cells (APCs) take up and process antigens. Retroviral particles are capable of transferring not only genetic information but also foreign cargo proteins when they are genetically fused to viral structural proteins. Here, we demonstrate the capacity of lentiviral protein transfer vectors (PTVs) for targeted antigen transfer directly into APCs and thereby induction of cytotoxic T cell responses. Targeting of lentiviral PTVs to APCs can be achieved analogously to gene transfer vectors by pseudotyping the particles with truncated wild-type measles virus (MV) glycoproteins (GPs), which use human SLAM (signaling lymphocyte activation molecule) as a main entry receptor. SLAM is expressed on stimulated lymphocytes and APCs, including dendritic cells. SLAM-targeted PTVs transferred the reporter protein green fluorescent protein (GFP) or Cre recombinase with strict receptor specificity into SLAM-expressing CHO and B cell lines, in contrast to broadly transducing vesicular stomatitis virus G protein (VSV-G) pseudotyped PTVs. Primary myeloid dendritic cells (mDCs) incubated with targeted or nontargeted ovalbumin (Ova)-transferring PTVs stimulated Ova-specific T lymphocytes, especially CD8+ T cells. Administration of Ova-PTVs into SLAM-transgenic and control mice confirmed the observed predominant induction of antigen-specific CD8+ T cells and demonstrated the capacity of protein transfer vectors as suitable vaccines for the induction of antigen-specific immune responses.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2015 · Journal of Virology
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    ABSTRACT: Treatment of haemophilia A by infusions of the clotting factor VIII (FVIII) results in the development of inhibitors/anti-drug antibodies in up to 25 % of patients. Mechanisms leading to immunogenicity of FVIII products are not yet fully understood. Amongst other factors, danger signals as elicited upon infection or surgery have been proposed to play a role. In the present study, we focused on effects of danger signals on maturation and activation of dendritic cells (DC) in the context of FVIII application. Human monocyte-derived DC were treated with FVIII alone, with a danger signal alone or a combination of both. By testing more than 60 different healthy donors, we show that FVIII and the bacterial danger signal lipopolysaccharide synergise in increasing DC activation, as characterised by increased expression of co-stimulatory molecules and secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines. The degree and frequency of this synergistic activation correlate with CD86 expression levels on immature DC prior to stimulation. In our assay system, plasma-derived but not recombinant FVIII products activate human DC in a danger signal-dependent manner. Further tested danger signals, such as R848 also induced DC activation in combination with FVIII, albeit not in every tested donor. In our hands, human DC but not human B cells or macrophages could be activated by FVIII in a danger signal-dependent manner. Our results suggest that immunogenicity of FVIII is a result of multiple factors including the presence of danger, predisposition of the patient, and the choice of a FVIII product for treatment.
    No preview · Article · May 2015 · Thrombosis and Haemostasis
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    ABSTRACT: Unlabelled: The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) emerged in 2012 as the causative agent of a severe respiratory disease with a fatality rate of approximately 30%. The high virulence and mortality rate prompted us to analyze aspects of MERS-CoV pathogenesis, especially its interaction with innate immune cells such as antigen-presenting cells (APCs). Particularly, we analyzed secretion of type I and type III interferons (IFNs) by APCs, i.e., B cells, macrophages, monocyte-derived/myeloid dendritic cells (MDDCs/mDCs), and by plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) of human and murine origin after inoculation with MERS-CoV. Production of large amounts of type I and III IFNs was induced exclusively in human pDCs, which were significantly higher than IFN induction by severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-CoV. Of note, IFNs were secreted in the absence of productive replication. However, receptor binding, endosomal uptake, and probably signaling via Toll-like receptor 7 (TLR7) were critical for sensing of MERS-CoV by pDCs. Furthermore, active transcription of MERS-CoV N RNA and subsequent N protein expression were evident in infected pDCs, indicating abortive infection. Taken together, our results point toward dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP4)-dependent endosomal uptake and subsequent infection of human pDCs by MERS-CoV. However, the replication cycle is stopped after early gene expression. In parallel, human pDCs are potent IFN-producing cells upon MERS-CoV infection. Knowledge of such IFN responses supports our understanding of MERS-CoV pathogenesis and is critical for the choice of treatment options. Importance: MERS-CoV causes a severe respiratory disease with high fatality rates in human patients. Recently, confirmed human cases have increased dramatically in both number and geographic distribution. Understanding the pathogenesis of this highly pathogenic CoV is crucial for developing successful treatment strategies. This study elucidates the interaction of MERS-CoV with APCs and pDCs, particularly the induction of type I and III IFN secretion. Human pDCs are the immune cell population sensing MERS-CoV but secrete significantly larger amounts of IFNs, especially IFN-α, than in response to SARS-CoV. A model for molecular virus-host interactions is presented outlining IFN induction in pDCs. The massive IFN secretion upon contact suggests a critical role of this mechanism for the high degree of immune activation observed during MERS-CoV infection.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2015 · Journal of Virology
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    ABSTRACT: Despite development of new antiviral drugs, viral infections are still a major health problem. The most potent antiviral defense mechanism is the innate production of type I interferon (IFN-I), which not only limits virus replication but also promotes antiviral T cell immunity through mechanisms, which remain insufficiently studied. Using the murine lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus model system, we show here that IFN-I signaling on T cells prevented their rapid elimination in vivo. Microarray analyses uncovered that IFN-I triggered the expression of selected inhibitory NK-cell-receptor ligands. Consequently, T cell immunity of IFN-I receptor (IFNAR)-deficient T cells could be restored by NK cell depletion or in NK-cell-deficient hosts (Nfil3(-/-)). The elimination of Ifnar1(-/-) T cells was dependent on NK-cell-mediated perforin expression. In summary, we identified IFN-I as a key player regulating the protection of T cells against regulatory NK cell function.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2014 · Immunity
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    ABSTRACT: Unlabelled: Cell types and mechanisms involved in type I interferon (IFN)-mediated anti-inflammatory effects are poorly understood. Upon injection of artificial double-stranded RNA (poly(I:C)), we observed severe liver damage in type I IFN-receptor (IFNAR) chain 1-deficient mice, but not in wild-type (WT) controls. Studying mice with conditional IFNAR ablations revealed that IFNAR triggering of myeloid cells is essential to protect mice from poly(I:C)-induced liver damage. Accordingly, in poly(I:C)-treated WT, but not IFNAR-deficient mice, monocytic myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) were recruited to the liver. Comparing WT and IFNAR-deficient mice with animals deficient for the IFNAR on myeloid cells only revealed a direct IFNAR-dependent production of the anti-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1RA) that could be assigned to liver-infiltrating cells. Upon poly(I:C) treatment, IFNAR-deficient mice displayed both a severe lack of IL-1RA production and an increased production of proinflammatory IL-1β, indicating a severely imbalanced cytokine milieu in the liver in absence of a functional type I IFN system. Depletion of IL-1β or treatment with recombinant IL-1RA both rescued IFNAR-deficient mice from poly(I:C)-induced liver damage, directly linking the deregulated IL-1β and IL-1RA production to liver pathology. Conclusion: Type I IFN signaling protects from severe liver damage by recruitment of monocytic MDSCs and maintaining a balance between IL-1β and IL-1RA production.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2014 · Hepatology
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    ABSTRACT: Conjugated vaccines consisting of flagellin and antigen activate TLR5 and induce strong innate and adaptive immune responses. Objective of the present study was to gain further insight into the mechanisms by which flagellin fusion proteins mediate their immune modulating effects. In a mouse model of Ova-induced intestinal allergy a fusion protein of flagellin and Ova (rflaA:Ova) was used for intranasal and intraperitoneal vaccination. Aggregation status of flaA, Ova and flaA:Ova were compared by light scattering, uptake of fluorescence labeled proteins into mDC was analyzed, processing was investigated by microsomal digestion experiments. Mechanism of DC-activation was investigated using proteasome and inflammasome inhibitors. Immune responses of wildtype, IL-10(-/-), TLR5(-/-) mDCs and Ova-transgenic T cells were investigated. Mucosal and i.p.-application of rflaA:Ova were able to prevent allergic sensitization, suppress disease-related symptoms, prevent body weight loss and reduction in food uptake. Intranasal vaccination resulted in strongest suppression of Ova-specific IgE production. These protective effects were associated with increased aggregation of rflaA:Ova and accompanied by tenfold higher uptake rates into mDC compared to the mixture of both proteins. Microsomal digestion showed that stimulation with rflaA:Ova resulted in faster degradation and the generation of different peptides compared to rOva. rflaA:Ova-mediated activation of mDC could be suppressed in a dose-dependent manner by the application of both inflammasome and proteasome inhibitors. Using TLR5(-/-) mDC the rflaA:Ova induced IL-10 secretion was shown to be TLR5 dependent. In co-cultures of IL-10(-/-) mDC with DO11.10 T cells the lack of rflaA:Ova-mediated IL-10 secretion resulted in enhanced levels of both TH2 (IL-4, IL-5) and TH1 (IL-2 and IFN-y) cytokines. In summary, mucosal vaccination with flaA:Ova showed strongest preventive effect. Stimulation with rflaA:Ova results in strong immune modulation mediated by enhanced uptake of the aggregated fusion protein, likely resulting in a different processing by DC as well as stronger TLR5 mediated cell activation.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2014 · PLoS ONE
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    ABSTRACT: Modified vaccinia virus Ankara (MVA)-encoding antigens are considered as safe vaccine candidates for various infectious diseases in humans. Here, we investigated the immune-modulating properties of MVA-encoding ovalbumin (MVA-OVA) on the allergen-specific immune response. The immune-modulating properties of MVA-OVA were investigated using GM-CSF-differentiated BMDCs from C57BL/6 mice. OVA expression upon MVA-OVA infection of BMDCs was monitored. Activation and maturation markers on viable MVA-OVA-infected mDCs were analyzed by flow cytometry. Secretion of INF-γ, IL-2, and IL-10 was determined in a co-culture of BMDCs infected with wtMVA or MVA-OVA and OVA-specific OT-I CD8(+) and OT-II CD4(+ ) T cells. BALB/c mice were vaccinated with wtMVA, MVA-OVA, or PBS, sensitized to OVA/alum and challenged with a diet containing chicken egg white. OVA-specific IgE, IgG1, and IgG2a and cytokine secretion from mesenteric lymph node (MLN) cells were analyzed. Body weight, body temperature, food uptake, intestinal inflammation, and health condition of mice were monitored. Infection with wtMVA and MVA-OVA induced comparable activation of mDCs. MVA-OVA-infected BMDCs expressed OVA and induced enhanced IFN-γ and IL-2 secretion from OVA-specific CD8(+ ) T cells in comparison with OVA, wtMVA, or OVA plus wtMVA. Prophylactic vaccination with MVA-OVA significantly repressed OVA-specific IgE, whereas OVA-specific IgG2a was induced. MVA-OVA vaccination suppressed TH 2 cytokine production in MLN cells and prevented the onset of allergic symptoms and inflammation in a mouse model of OVA-induced intestinal allergy. Modified vaccinia virus Ankara-ovalbumin (MVA-OVA) vaccination induces a strong OVA-specific TH 1- immune response, likely mediated by the induction of IFN-γ and IgG2a. Finally, MVA-based vaccines need to be evaluated for their therapeutic potential in established allergy models.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2013 · Allergy
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    ABSTRACT: We present the development and application of a new machine-learning approach to exhaustively and reliably identify major histocompatibility complex class I (MHC-I) ligands among all 20(8) octapeptides and in genome-derived proteomes of Mus musculus , influenza A H3N8, and vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV). Focusing on murine H-2K(b), we identified potent octapeptides exhibiting direct MHC-I binding and stabilization on the surface of TAP-deficient RMA-S cells. Computationally identified VSV-derived peptides induced CD8(+) T-cell proliferation after VSV-infection of mice. The study demonstrates that high-level machine-learning models provide a unique access to rationally designed peptides and a promising approach toward "reverse vaccinology".
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2013 · ACS Chemical Biology
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    ABSTRACT: Hematopoietic humanization of mice is frequently used to study the human immune system and its reaction upon experimental intervention. Immune compromised NOD-Rag1(-/-) mice, additionally deficient for the common gamma chain of cytokine receptors (γc) (NOD-Rag1(-/-) γc(-/-) mice), lack B, T and NK cells and allow for efficient human peripheral mononuclear cell (PBMC) engraftment. Yet, a major experimental drawback for studies using these mice is the rapid onset of graft versus host disease (GvHD). In order to elucidate the contribution of the xenogenic murine MHC class II in this context, we generated immune deficient mice expressing human MHC class II (HLA-DQ8) on a mouse class II deficient background (Aβ(-/-) ). We studied repopulation and onset of GvHD in these mouse strains following transplantation of DQ8 haplotype matched human PBMCs. The presence of HLA class II significantly promoted the repopulation rates in these mice. Virtually all of the engrafted cells were CD3(+) T cells. The presence of HLA class II did not advance B cell engraftment, such that humoral immune responses were undetectable. However, the overall survival of DQ8-expressing mice was significantly prolonged, compared to mice expressing mouse MHC class II molecules, and correlated with an increased time span until onset of GvHD. Our data thus demonstrate that this new mouse strain is useful to study GvHD and the prolonged animal survival and engraftment rates make it superior for experimental intervention following PBMC engraftment.
    Preview · Article · Apr 2013 · Clinical & Experimental Immunology
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    ABSTRACT: Background Modified vaccinia virus Ankara (MVA) is a highly attenuated virus and a promising vaccine vector with potent immune stimulating properties. Deletion of the gene encoding the viral interleukin-1beta receptor (vIL-1βR) in MVA (MVAΔIL-1βR) was previously shown to enhance memory T cell function. Here, we investigated the influence of vIL-1βR on blocking interleukin-1beta (IL-1β) upon MVA infection in various antigen presenting cells of murine and human origin, and analyzed whether inflammasome function contributes to IL-1β production in different cell types. Findings Extending previous studies, immunizing mice with low doses of MVAΔIL-1βR still showed enhanced memory CD8+ T cell activation compared to MVA wild-type (MVAwt) immunization. In vitro, murine myeloid dendritic cells, and activated, but not naive primary macrophages were identified as potent producers of IL-1β upon infection with MVA. Importantly, free IL-1β was only detected in the absence of vIL-1βR. Moreover, MVAΔIL-1βR increased amounts of bioactive IL-1β compared to MVAwt after infection of human THP-1 cells, as detected using a reporter system that only responds to active and free IL-1β. The MVA-mediated induction of IL-1β was confirmed to depend on inflammasome function in human and murine cells, however in murine cells this apparently involves caspase-1-independent pathways. Conclusions MVA lacking IL-1β blocking activity leads to increased concentrations of free IL-1β upon infection of murine and human antigen presenting cells; this is likely responsible for enhanced memory T cell activation upon MVAΔIL-1βR immunization of mice. Moreover, our results suggest that MVA-mediated IL-1β induction is a multifactorial process.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2013 · Virology Journal
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    ABSTRACT: Recently, we identified the CD20 homolog Ms4a8a as a novel molecule expressed by tumor-associated macrophages that directly enhances tumor growth. Here, we analyzed Ms4a8a(+) macrophages in M2-associated infectious pathologies. In late-stage Trypanosoma congolense and Taenia crassiceps infections, Ms4a8a expression was detected in hepatic and peritoneal macrophages respectively. Innate immunity in these infections is modulated by Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling and TLR2/4/7 agonists strongly induced Ms4a8a expression in bone marrow derived macrophages (BMDMs) treated with M2 mediators (glucocorticoids/IL-4). LPS/dexamethasone/IL-4-induced Ms4a8a(+) BMDMs were characterized by strong expression of mRNA of mannose receptor (Mmr), arginase 1, and CD163, and by decreased iNOS expression. Coinduction of Ms4a8a by M2 mediators and TLR agonists involved the classical TLR signaling cascade via activation of MyD88/TRIF and NF-κB. Forced overexpression of Ms4a8a modulated the TLR4 response of RAW264.7 cells as shown by gene expression profiling. Upregulation of Hdc, Tcfec, and Sla was confirmed both in primary LPS/dexamethasone/IL-4-stimulated Ms4a8a(+) BMDMs and in peritoneal macrophages from late-stage Taenia crassiceps infection. In conclusion, we show that TLR signaling skews the typical alternative macrophage activation program to induce a special M2-like macrophage subset in vitro that also occurs in immunomodulatory immune reactions in vivo, a process directly involving the CD20 homolog Ms4a8a.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2012 · European Journal of Immunology
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    ABSTRACT: TGN1412, a superagonistic CD28-specific antibody, was shown to require Fc-cross-linking or immobilization as a prerequisite to mediate T-cell proliferation and cytokine release in vitro. We used primary human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) to study their ability to induce activation of TGN1412-treated T cells. We confirmed that peripheral primary human T cells do not show activation upon stimulation with soluble TGN1412 alone. Nevertheless, cocultivation of TGN1412-treated T cells with HUVECs induced T-cell activation that was further enhanced using cytokine prestimulated HUVECs. Unexpectedly, Fc-FcγR interaction was dispensable for endothelial cell-mediated proliferation of TGN1412-treated T cells. Transwell-culture assays showed that TGN1412-treated T cells need direct cell-to-cell contact to HUVECs to induce proliferation. We found that costimulatory ICOS-LICOS interaction between T cells and endothelial cells is critically involved in TGN1412-mediated effects. Blocking LICOS reduced TGN1412-mediated T-cell proliferation significantly, whereas recombinant LICOS fully conferred TGN1412-mediated T-cell proliferation. Of note, cytokine stimulation enhanced LICOS expression on HUVECs and ICOS-LICOS interaction up-regulated ICOS expression on TGN1412-treated T cells. Hence, we provide a model of positive feedback conferred by ICOS-LICOS interaction between TGN1412-treated T cells and endothelial cells.
    No preview · Article · May 2012 · Blood

  • No preview · Article · Jan 2012 · Angewandte Chemie
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    ABSTRACT: Interfering with interferon: A low-molecular-weight inhibitor has been discovered that blocks the interaction between interferon-α (IFN-α) and its receptor (see picture for a model of the interfaces). The resulting lead compound significantly reduces IFN-α production in vitro. NMR and SPR experiments confirm the direct interaction of the inhibitor with IFN-α.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2012 · Angewandte Chemie International Edition
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    ABSTRACT: The Toll-like receptor (TLR) 5 agonist flagellin is associated with immunomodulatory functions. We sought to investigate whether Listeria monocytogenes-derived flagellin A (flaA) can modulate ovalbumin (OVA)-specific T-cell responses and prevent OVA-induced intestinal allergy. Bone marrow-derived myeloid dendritic cells from BALB/c, C57BL/6, or TLR signaling-deficient (MyD88(-/-)) mice were stimulated with rOVA, rflaA, rflaA plus rOVA, or a recombinant fusion protein consisting of rflaA and rOVA (rflaA:OVA). The immunomodulating properties of rflaA plus rOVA and rflaA:OVA were investigated by means of DC-T-cell coculture with CD4(+) T cells from OVA-T-cell receptor transgenic or OVA/alum-immunized mice. rflaA:OVA was applied as a prophylactic and therapeutic vaccine in a murine model of intestinal allergy. rflaA:OVA induced upregulation of TLR5 and dose-dependent IL-6 and IL-10 secretion by myeloid dendritic cells. IL-10 contributed to repressing IL-4 and IFN-γ secretion by OVA-T-cell receptor transgenic CD4(+) T cells. Moreover, rflaA:OVA suppressed CD4(+) T cells derived from T(H)2-biased mice on OVA/alum immunization. In a murine model of intestinal allergy, prophylactic vaccination with rflaA:OVA reduced T-cell activation. Protection from intestinal allergy included suppression of OVA-specific IgE while inducing OVA-specific IgG(2a). Equimolar amounts of rflaA or rOVA provided alone or as a mixture did not have comparable effects. Moreover, therapeutic vaccination was shown to reduce allergic symptoms and T-cell activation in the spleen. The rflaA:OVA fusion protein showed strong TLR-mediated immunomodulating capacities probably attributed by the proximity of adjuvant and allergen, leading to the prevention of intestinal allergy in a murine disease model. Therefore recombinant flaA:allergen fusion proteins are promising vaccine candidates for intervention in patients with IgE-mediated allergy.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2011 · The Journal of allergy and clinical immunology
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    ABSTRACT: Type I interferon (IFN-α/β) induction upon viral infection contributes to the early antiviral host defense and ensures survival until the onset of adaptive immunity. Many viral infections lead to an acute, transient IFN expression which peaks a few hours after infection and reverts to initial levels after 24 to 36 h. Robust IFN expression often is conferred by specialized plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDC) and may depend on positive-feedback amplification via the type I IFN receptor (IFNAR). Here, we show that mice infected with Thogoto virus (THOV), which is an influenza virus-like orthomyxovirus transmitted by ticks, mounted sustained IFN responses that persisted up to 72 h after infection. For this purpose, we used a variant of THOV lacking its IFN-antagonistic protein ML, an elongated version of the matrix (M) protein [THOV(ΔML)]. Of note, large amounts of type I IFN were also found in the serum of mice lacking the IFNAR. Early IFN-α expression seemed to depend on Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling, whereas prolonged IFN-α responses strictly depended on RIG-I-like helicase (RLH) signaling. Unexpectedly, THOV(ΔML)-infected bone marrow-derived pDC (BM-pDC) produced only moderate IFN levels, whereas myeloid DC (BM-mDC) showed massive IFN induction that was IPS-1-dependent, suggesting that BM-mDC are involved in the massive, sustained IFN production in THOV(ΔML)-infected animals. Thus, our data are compatible with the model that THOV(ΔML) infection is sensed in the acute phase via TLR and RLH systems, whereas at later time points only RLH signaling is responsible for the induction of sustained IFN responses.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2010 · Journal of Virology
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    ABSTRACT: Lentiviral gene transfer vectors are suitable for genetically modifying non-cycling primary human cells. In this study, we analyzed transduced human dendritic cells (DC) generated by the use of three different GFP-encoding lentiviral vectors, HIV-2 ROD A Δenv-GFP (ROD A), SIVsmm PBj ΔE EGFP (PBj), and SIVmac ΔE EGFP (SIVmac). CD14+ monocytes were isolated from buffy coat, transduced, and differentiated to immature and mature DC. Cytofluometric analysis of DC revealed high transduction efficiencies at MOI 1 for simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV)-derived vectors PBj and SIVmac ranging between 80-90 and 70-90%, respectively. In contrast, transduction with ROD A resulted only in approximately 30%-positive DC at the same MOI. Of note, none of the analyzed vectors affected expression of maturation and/or activation markers. Moreover, transduction with PBj or SIVmac did not induce significant cytokine responses whereas ROD A transduction stimulated weak interferon-alpha responses. SIVmac transduced DC showed normal phagocytosis of antigen and normal allo T cell stimulatory capacity when compared with untreated DC. Thus, the SIVmac lentiviral transduction vector is suitable for efficient genetic modification of human DC without affecting phenotype or function and thus qualifies this vector as a versatile tool for use in basic research.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2010 · Molecular Biotechnology
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    ABSTRACT: Toll-like receptor ligands are immune-modulatory components linking innate and adaptive immune responses and are considered to be promising vaccine components. Objective of this study was to investigate the adjuvant activity of Listeria monocytogenesis-derived TLR5-ligand flagellin A (flaA) genetically fused to ovalbumin (Ova, major chicken white egg allergen) in a murine in vitro system. Recombinant flaA, rOva, and a fusion protein of rflaA and rOva (rflaA:Ova) were over-expressed in Escherchia coli and purified by FPLC. LPS depletion was confirmed by LAL test. TLR5-binding was evaluated by human and murine TLR5-transgenic HEK 293 cells. The immune-modulatory effect of rflaA:Ova and rflaA:Ova modified by reduction and alkylation on purified BALB/c bone marrow-derived myeloid (mDC) and plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDC) was investigated by flow cytometry and intracellular cytokine staining (ICS). Dose-dependent IL-8 secretion from transgenic HEK 293 cells confirmed binding of rflaA and rflaA:Ova molecules to human and murine TLR5. Recombinant flaA showed similar biological reactivity to TLR5-ligand fliC derived from Salmonella typhimurium applied as positive control. Compared to rflaA, both rflaA:Ova preparations induced higher expression of maturation markers (CD40, CD69, CD80, and CD86) on mDC, whereas only CD69 and CD40 were upregulated on pDC. Moreover, IL-6 and IL-10 production by mDC was enhanced upon stimulation with rflaA:Ova constructs in comparison to an equimolar mixture of both proteins whereas pDC did not show secretion of the investigated cytokines. Any immunological effects of LPS can be excluded by depletion of endotoxins and the lack of IL-10 production upon proteinase K digestion of rflaA:Ova. In summary, the rflaA:Ova fusion proteins showed an enhanced immune modulating capacity in comparison to rflaA or the mixture of rflaA and antigen. Since the rflaA:Ova fusion proteins induce strong IL-10 induction they are considered as potential vaccine candidates to improve allergen-specific immunotherapy.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2010 · Molecular Immunology