Long-term central and effector SHIV-specific memory T cell responses elicited after a single immunization with a novel lentivector DNA vaccine.
ABSTRACT: Prevention of HIV acquisition and replication requires long lasting and effective immunity. Given the state of HIV vaccine development, innovative vectors and immunization strategies are urgently needed to generate safe and efficacious HIV vaccines. Here, we developed a novel lentivirus-based DNA vector that does not integrate in the host genome and undergoes a single-cycle of replication. Viral proteins are constitutively expressed under the control of Tat-independent LTR promoter from goat lentivirus. We immunized six macaques once only with CAL-SHIV-IN- DNA using combined intramuscular and intradermal injections plus electroporation. Antigen-specific T cell responses were monitored for 47 weeks post-immunization (PI). PBMCs were assessed directly ex vivo or after 6 and 12 days of in vitro culture using antigenic and/or homeostatic proliferation. IFN-? ELISPOT was used to measure immediate cytokine secretion from antigen specific effector cells and from memory precursors with high proliferative capacity (PHPC). The memory phenotype and functions (proliferation, cytokine expression, lytic content) of specific T cells were tested using multiparametric FACS-based assays. All immunized macaques developed lasting peripheral CD8+ and CD4+ T cell responses mainly against Gag and Nef antigens. During the primary expansion phase, immediate effector cells as well as increasing numbers of proliferating cells with limited effector functions were detected which expressed markers of effector (EM) and central (CM) memory phenotypes. These responses contracted but then reemerged later in absence of antigen boost. Strong PHPC responses comprising vaccine-specific CM and EM T cells that readily expanded and acquired immediate effector functions were detected at 40/47 weeks PI. Altogether, our study demonstrated that a single immunization with a replication-limited DNA vaccine elicited persistent vaccine-specific CM and EM CD8+ and CD4+ T cells with immediate and readily inducible effector functions, in the absence of ongoing antigen expression.
Project description:The generation of CD8+ T-cell memory is an important aim of immunization. While several distinct subsets of CD8+ T-cell memory have been described, the lineage relationships between effector (EFF), effector memory (EM) and central memory (CM) T cells remain contentious. Specifically, there is contradictory experimental evidence to support both the linear (Naive>EFF>EM>CM) and progressive differentiation (Naive>CM>EM>EFF) models. In this study, we applied a systems biology approach to examine global transcriptional relationships between the three major CD8+ T cell subsets arising endogenously as a result of vaccination with three different prime-boost vaccine regimens. Differential gene expression analysis and principle component analysis revealed that central memory cells were more closely related to naive T cells than both effector memory and effector cells. When the transcriptional relationships between subsets were enriched in an unbiased fashion with known global transcriptional changes that result when T-cells repeatedly encounter antigen, our analysis favored a model whereby cumulative antigenic stimulation drives differentiation specifically from Naive > CM > EM > EFF. These findings provide an insight into the lineage relationship between mature CD8+ T-cell subsets and will help in the rational design of vaccines aimed at generating effective immune responses against infections and cancer. Effector (EFF), effector memory (EM), central memory (CM) and naive CD8+ T cells from mice spleen. Memory subset arise endogenously as a result of vaccination with three different prime-boost vaccine regimens: DNA-rAd5, rAd5-rAd5 and rAd5-rLCMV.
Project description:Memory T cells of the effector type (T(EM)) account for the characteristic rapidity of memory T-cell responses, whereas memory T cells of the central type (T(CM)) account for long-lasting, vigorously proliferating memory T-cell responses. How antigen-stimulated (primed) T cells develop into different memory T-cell subsets with diverse tissue distributions is largely unknown. Here we show that after respiratory tract infection of mice with influenza virus, viral antigen associated with dendritic cells (DCs) was abundant in lung-draining lymph nodes (DLN) and the spleen for more than a week but was scant and transient in nondraining lymph nodes (NDLN). Correspondingly, activated CD8 T cells proliferated extensively in DLN and the spleen but minimally in NDLN. Strikingly, however, although most persisting CD8 T cells in DLN and spleen exhibited the T(EM) phenotype, those persisting in NDLN exhibited the T(CM) phenotype. Reducing antigen exposure by depleting DCs at the peak of primary T-cell responses enhanced the development of T(CM), whereas subjecting primed CD8 T cells from NDLN to additional antigen stimulation inhibited T(CM) development. These findings demonstrate that differences in persistence of antigen-bearing DCs in various tissues regulate the tissue-specific pattern of memory CD8 T-cell development. The findings have significant implications for design of vaccines and immunization strategies.
Project description:Many pathogens infiltrate the body and initiate infection via mucosal surfaces. Hence, eliciting cellular immune responses at mucosal portals of entry is of great interest for vaccine development against mucosal pathogens. We describe a pulmonary vaccination strategy combining Toll-like receptor (TLR) agonists with antigen-carrying lipid nanocapsules [interbilayer-crosslinked multilamellar vesicles (ICMVs)], which elicit high-frequency, long-lived, antigen-specific effector memory T cell responses at multiple mucosal sites. Pulmonary immunization using protein- or peptide-loaded ICMVs combined with two TLR agonists, polyinosinic-polycytidylic acid (polyI:C) and monophosphoryl lipid A, was safe and well tolerated in mice, and led to increased antigen transport to draining lymph nodes compared to equivalent subcutaneous vaccination. This response was mediated by the vast number of antigen-presenting cells (APCs) in the lungs. Nanocapsules primed 13-fold more T cells than did equivalent soluble vaccines, elicited increased expression of mucosal homing integrin ?????, and generated long-lived T cells in both the lungs and distal (for example, vaginal) mucosa strongly biased toward an effector memory (T(EM)) phenotype. These T(EM) responses were highly protective in both therapeutic tumor and prophylactic viral vaccine settings. Together, these data suggest that targeting cross-presentation-promoting particulate vaccines to the APC-rich pulmonary mucosa can promote robust T cell responses for protection of mucosal surfaces.
Project description:Variola major (smallpox) infection claimed hundreds of millions lives before it was eradicated by a simple vaccination strategy: epicutaneous application of the related orthopoxvirus vaccinia virus (VACV) to superficially injured skin (skin scarification, s.s.). However, the remarkable success of this strategy was attributed to the immunogenicity of VACV rather than to the unique mode of vaccine delivery. We now show that VACV immunization via s.s., but not conventional injection routes, is essential for the generation of superior T cell-mediated immune responses that provide complete protection against subsequent challenges, independent of neutralizing antibodies. Skin-resident effector memory T cells (T(EM) cells) provide complete protection against cutaneous challenge, whereas protection against lethal respiratory challenge requires both respiratory mucosal T(EM) cells and central memory T cells (T(CM) cells). Vaccination with recombinant VACV (rVACV) expressing a tumor antigen was protective against tumor challenge only if delivered via the s.s. route; it was ineffective if delivered by hypodermic injection. The clinically safer nonreplicative modified vaccinia Ankara virus (MVA) also generated far superior protective immunity when delivered via the s.s. route compared to intramuscular (i.m.) injection as used in MVA clinical trials. Thus, delivery of rVACV-based vaccines, including MVA vaccines, through physically disrupted epidermis has clear-cut advantages over conventional vaccination via hypodermic injection.
Project description:Increased expression of the voltage-gated potassium channel K?1.3 on activated effector memory T cells (T(EM)) is associated with pathology in multiple sclerosis (MS). To date, most studies of K?1.3 channels in MS have focused on CD4+ T(EM) cells. Much less is known about the functional relevance of Kv1.3 on CD8+ T(EM) cells. Herein, we examined the effects of K?1.3 blockade on CD8+ T cell proliferation, differentiation into cytotoxic effector cells, and release of granzyme B (GrB), a key effector of CD8+ T cell-mediated cytotoxicity. We confirmed the expression of Kv1.3 channels on activated human CD8+ T lymphocytes by immunofluorescent staining. To test the functional relevance of the Kv1.3 channel in CD8+ T cells, we inhibited this channel via pharmacological blockers or a lentiviral-dominant negative (Kv1.xDN) approach and determined the effects of the blockade on critical pathogenic parameters of CD8+ T cells. We found that blockade of Kv1.3 with both lentivirus and pharmacologic agents effectively inhibited cytotoxic effector memory cells' proliferation, secretion of GrB, and their ability to kill neural progenitor cells. Intriguingly, the KvDN transduced T cells exhibited arrested differentiation from central memory (T(CM)) to effector memory (T(EM)) states. Transduction of cells that had already differentiated into T(EM) with KvDN led to their conversion into T(CM). CD8+ T(EM) have a critical role in MS and other autoimmune diseases. Our present results indicate a critical role for Kv1.3 in the conversion of CD8+ T cells into potential pathogenic effector cells with cytotoxic function.
Project description:DepoVax™ is an innovative and strongly immunogenic vaccine platform. Survivin is highly expressed in many tumor types and has reported prognostic value. To generate tumor-specific immune response, a novel cancer vaccine was formulated in DepoVax platform (DPX-Survivac) using survivin HLA class I peptides. Safety and immune potency of DPX-Survivac was tested in combination with immune-modulator metronomic cyclophosphamide in ovarian cancer patients. All the patients receiving the therapy produced antigen-specific immune responses; higher dose vaccine and cyclophosphamide treatment generating significantly higher magnitude responses. Strong T cell responses were associated with differentiation of naïve T cells into central/effector memory (CM/EM) and late differentiated (LD) polyfunctional antigen-specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cells. This approach enabled rapid de novo activation/expansion of vaccine antigen-specific CD8+ T cells and provided a strong rationale for further testing to determine clinical benefits associated with this immune activation. These data represent vaccine-induced T cell activation in a clinical setting to a self-tumor antigen previously described only in animal models.
Project description:Memory T cells can be divided into central memory T cell (T(CM) cell) and effector memory T cell (T(EM) cell) subsets based on homing characteristics and effector functions. Whether T(EM) and T(CM) cells represent interconnected or distinct lineages is unclear, although the present paradigm suggests that T(EM) and T(CM) cells follow a linear differentiation pathway from naive T cells to effector T cells to T(EM) cells to T(CM) cells. We show here that naive T cell precursor frequency profoundly influenced the pathway along which CD8+ memory T cells developed. At low precursor frequency, those T(EM) cells generated represented a stable cell lineage that failed to further differentiate into T(CM) cells. These findings do not adhere to the present dogma regarding memory T cell generation and provide a means for identifying factors controlling memory T cell lineage commitment.
Project description:A parasitic protozoan <i>Trypanosoma cruzi</i> (<i>T. cruzi</i>) is the etiologic agent of Chagas disease. Previously, we have identified <i>T. cruzi</i> antigens TcG2 and TcG4 as potential vaccine candidates, cloned in eukaryotic expression vector pCDNA3.1 (referred as p2/4) and tested their ability to elicit protection from <i>T. cruzi</i> infection. In the present study, we subcloned the two antigens in a nanoplasmid that is optimized for delivery, antigen expression, and regulatory compliance standards, and evaluated the nanovaccine (referred as nano2/4) for prophylactic protection against repeat <i>T. cruzi</i> infections. For this, C57BL/6 mice were immunized with two doses of p2/4 or nano2/4 at 21 days interval, challenged with <i>T. cruzi</i> 21 days after 2<sup>nd</sup> immunization, and euthanized at 10- and 21-days post-infection (pi) corresponding to parasite dissemination and replication phase, respectively. Some mice were re-challenged 21 days pi and monitored at 7 days after re-infection. Without the help of a vaccine, <i>T. cruzi</i> elicited delayed and sub-par T cell activation and low levels of effector molecules that failed to control tissue dissemination and replication of the parasite and provided no protection against repeat challenge infection. The nano2/4 was most effective in eliciting an early activation and production of IFN-? by CD4<sup>+</sup>T effector/effector memory (T<sub>EM</sub>) cells and cytolytic perforin (PFN) and granzyme B (GZB) molecules by CD4<sup>+</sup> and CD8<sup>+</sup> T<sub>EM</sub> subsets at 10 days pi that was followed by robust expansion of CD4<sup>+</sup> and CD8<sup>+</sup> T<sub>EM</sub> and T<sub>CM</sub> cells with further increase in IFN-? production at 21 days pi. Consequently, nano2/4-immunized mice exhibited potent control of parasite dissemination at 10 days pi, and tissue parasite burden and tissue inflammatory infiltrate and necrosis were barely detectable at 21 days pi. Furthermore, nano2/4-immunized mice responded to re-challenge infection with high levels of effector molecules production by CD4<sup>+</sup> and CD8<sup>+</sup> T<sub>EM</sub> subpopulations that offered even better control of tissue parasite burden than was observed after 1<sup>st</sup> infection. In comparison, non-vaccinated/infected mice exhibited clinical features of sickness and 59% mortality within 7 days after re-infection. In conclusion, we show that delivery of TcG2 and TcG4 in nanoplasmid offers excellent, protective T cell immunity against repeat <i>T. cruzi</i> infections.
Project description:The memory CD8(+) T cell population elicited by immunization with recombinant human adenovirus serotype 5 (rHuAd5) vaccines is composed primarily of effector and effector memory cells (T(EM)) with limited polyfunctionality. In this study, we investigated whether treatment with immunomodulators could enhance and/or redistribute the CD8(+) memory population elicited by rHuAd5. Vaccination in combination with both rapamycin (to modulate differentiation) and an OX40 agonist (to enhance costimulation) increased both the quantity and polyfunctionality of the CD8(+) memory T cell population, with expansion of the T(EM) and memory precursor populations. Furthermore, this intervention enhanced protection against multiple virus challenges. Attenuation of adenovirus transgene expression was required to enable the combination rapamycin + OX40 agonist immunomodulatory treatment to further enhance skewing towards central memory formation, indicating that persistence of antigen expression ultimately limits development of this memory population following rHuAd5 immunization. These results demonstrate that during the expansion phase following adenovirus immunization, the level of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) activity, the amount of costimulation and the duration of antigen availability act together to define the magnitude, phenotype, and functionality of memory CD8(+) T cells. Modulation of these factors can be used to selectively manipulate memory formation.
Project description:Lack of an effective vaccine results in 9 million new cases of tuberculosis (TB) every year and 1.8 million deaths worldwide. Although many infants are vaccinated at birth with BCG (an attenuated M. bovis), this does not prevent infection or development of TB after childhood. Immune responses necessary for prevention of infection or disease are still unknown, making development of effective vaccines against TB challenging. Several new vaccines are ready for human clinical trials, but these trials are difficult and expensive; especially challenging is determining the appropriate cellular response necessary for protection. The magnitude of an immune response is likely key to generating a successful vaccine. Characteristics such as numbers of central memory (CM) and effector memory (EM) T cells responsive to a diverse set of epitopes are also correlated with protection. Promising vaccines against TB contain mycobacterial subunit antigens (Ag) present during both active and latent infection. We hypothesize that protection against different key immunodominant antigens could require a vaccine that produces different levels of EM and CM for each Ag-specific memory population. We created a computational model to explore EM and CM values, and their ratio, within what we term Memory Design Space. Our model captures events involved in T cell priming within lymph nodes and tracks their circulation through blood to peripheral tissues. We used the model to test whether multiple Ag-specific memory cell populations could be generated with distinct locations within Memory Design Space at a specific time point post vaccination. Boosting can further shift memory populations to memory cell ratios unreachable by initial priming events. By strategically varying antigen load, properties of cellular interactions within the LN, and delivery parameters (e.g., number of boosts) of multi-subunit vaccines, we can generate multiple Ag-specific memory populations that cover a wide range of Memory Design Space. Given a set of desired characteristics for Ag-specific memory populations, we can use our model as a tool to predict vaccine formulations that will generate those populations.