• NKT cell stimulation with α-galactosylceramide results in a block of Th17 differentiation after intranasal immunization in mice.

      Zygmunt, Beata M; Weissmann, Sebastian F; Guzman, Carlos A; Department of Vaccinology and Applied Microbiology, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, Braunschweig, Germany. beata.zygmunt@bbsrc.ac.uk (2012)
      In a previous study we demonstrated that intranasal (i.n.) vaccination promotes a Th17 biased immune response. Here, we show that co-administration of a pegylated derivative of α-galactosylceramide (αGCPEG) with an antigen, even in the presence of Th17-polarizing compounds, results in a strong blocking of Th17 differentiation. Additional studies demonstrated that this phenomenon is specifically dependent on soluble factors, like IL-4 and IFNγ, which are produced by NKT cells. Even NK1.1 negative NKT cells, which by themselves produce IL-17A, are able to block Th17 differentiation. It follows that the use of αGCPEG as adjuvant would enable to tailor Th17 responses, according to the specific clinical needs. This knowledge expands our understanding of the role played by NKT cells in overall control of the cytokine microenvironment, as well as in the overall shaping of adaptive immune responses.
    • NKT cell stimulation with α-galactosylceramide results in a block of Th17 differentiation after intranasal immunization in mice.

      Zygmunt, Beata M; Weissmann, Sebastian F; Guzman, Carlos A; Department of Vaccinology and Applied Microbiology, Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, Braunschweig, Germany. beata.zygmunt@bbsrc.ac.uk (2012)
      In a previous study we demonstrated that intranasal (i.n.) vaccination promotes a Th17 biased immune response. Here, we show that co-administration of a pegylated derivative of α-galactosylceramide (αGCPEG) with an antigen, even in the presence of Th17-polarizing compounds, results in a strong blocking of Th17 differentiation. Additional studies demonstrated that this phenomenon is specifically dependent on soluble factors, like IL-4 and IFNγ, which are produced by NKT cells. Even NK1.1 negative NKT cells, which by themselves produce IL-17A, are able to block Th17 differentiation. It follows that the use of αGCPEG as adjuvant would enable to tailor Th17 responses, according to the specific clinical needs. This knowledge expands our understanding of the role played by NKT cells in overall control of the cytokine microenvironment, as well as in the overall shaping of adaptive immune responses.
    • Pidotimod promotes functional maturation of dendritic cells and displays adjuvant properties at the nasal mucosa level.

      Giagulli, Cinzia; Noerder, Miriam; Avolio, Manuela; Becker, Pablo D; Fiorentini, Simona; Guzman, Carlos A; Caruso, Arnaldo; Department of Experimental and Applied Medicine, Section of Microbiology, University of Brescia, Medical School, Brescia, Italy. (2009-11)
      Mucosal dendritic cells (DCs) are very important in the process of antigen presentation to T cells, playing a key role in the induction of primary and secondary immune responses. Pidotimod is a synthetic substance capable of modulating immune cell functions, but the effect of pidotimod on human DCs has not been investigated yet. Here we demonstrate the ability of pidotimod to induce DC maturation and up-regulate the expression of HLA-DR and co-stimulatory molecules CD83 and CD86, which are fundamental for communication with adaptative immunity cells. Pidotimod also stimulated DCs to release high amounts of pro-inflammatory molecules such as MCP-1 and TNF-alpha cytokines and to drive T cell proliferation and differentiation towards a Th1 phenotype. Moreover, we demonstrate that pidotimod in vivo promotes strong and specific humoral and cellular immune response when co-administered intranasally with a model antigen. Taken together our data suggest the possibility to use pidotimod as adjuvant molecule to facilitate the activation of the innate immune system as well as to promote an effective mucosal and systemic immune response.