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Granulocyte‐macrophage colony‐stimulating factor, a potent adjuvant for polarization to Th‐17 pattern: an experience on HIV‐1 vaccine model

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Cytokines are mediators for polarization of immune response in vaccines. Studies show that co‐immunization of DNA vaccines with granulocyte‐macrophage colony‐stimulating factor (GM‐CSF) can increase immune responses. Here, experimental mice were immunized with HIV‐1tat/pol/gag/env DNA vaccine with GM‐CSF and boosted with recombinant vaccine. Lymphocyte proliferation with Brdu and CTL activity, IL‐4, IFN‐γ, IL‐17 cytokines, total antibody, and IgG1 and IgG2a isotypes were assessed with ELISA. Results show that GM‐CSF as adjuvant in DNA immunization significantly increased lymphocyte proliferation and IFN‐γ cytokines, but CTL response was tiny increased. Also GM‐CSF as adjuvant decreased IL‐4 cytokine vs mere vaccine group. IL‐17 in the group that immunized with mixture of DNA vaccine/GM‐CSF was significantly increased vs DNA vaccine group. Result of total antibody shows that GM‐CSF increased antibody response in which both IgG1 and IgG2a increased. Overall, results confirmed the beneficial effect of GM‐CSF as adjuvant to increase vaccine immunogenicity. The hallmark result of this study was to increase IL‐17 cytokine with DNA vaccine/GM‐CSF immunized group. This study for the first time provides the evidence of the potency of GM‐CSF in the induction of IL‐17 in response to a vaccine, which is important for control of infection such as HIV‐1.
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Keywords: Granulocyte‐macrophage colony‐stimulating factor; HIV‐1 DNA vaccine; Th‐17; adjuvant; immune response

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2017

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