Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 12595418
Infect. Immun. 2003 Mar;71(3):1083-90
Listeria monocytogenes is considered as a potential live bacterial vector, particularly for the induction of CD8 T cells. The CD4 T-cell immune response triggered after enteral immunization of mice has not yet been thoroughly characterized. The dynamics of gamma interferon (IFN-gamma)- and interleukin-4 (IL-4)-secreting CD4 T cells were analyzed after priming through intragastric delivery of an attenuated delta actA recombinant L. monocytogenes strain expressing the Leishmania major LACK protein; a peptide of this protein, LACK(158-173) peptide (pLACK), is a well-characterized CD4 T-cell target in BALB/c mice. Five compartments were monitored: Peyer’s patches, mesenteric lymph nodes (MLN), spleen, liver, and blood. A single intragastric inoculation of delta actA-LACK-LM in BALB/c mice led to colonization of the MLN and spleen at a significant level for at least 3 days. Efficient priming of IFN-gamma-secreting pLACK-reactive CD4 T cells was observed in all tested compartments. Interestingly, IL-4-secreting pLACK-reactive CD4 T cells were detectable at day 6 or 7 only in blood and liver. The absence of translocation of viable bacteria through the intestinal epithelium after further delta actA-LACK-LM inoculations was concomitant with the absence of an increase in the level of IFN-gamma secreted by the MLN, blood, and splenic pLACK-reactive Th1 T cells, although the levels remained significantly above the basal level. No change in this population size was detected in the spleen. However, an increase in the number of intragastric inoculations had a clinical beneficial effect in L. major-infected BALB/c mice. L. monocytogenes thus presents the potential of an efficient vector for induction of CD4 T cells when administered by the enteral route.