Title

The Th1 immune response against HIV-1 Gag p24-derived peptides in mice expressing HLA-A02.01 and HLA-DR1

ORCiD

David M. Ojcius: 0000-0003-1461-4495

Document Type

Article

Publication Title

European Journal of Immunology

ISSN

0014-2980

Volume

37

Issue

9

DOI

10.1002/eji.200636819

First Page

2635

Last Page

2644

Publication Date

9-1-2007

Abstract

Using HLA-DR1-transgenic H-2 class II knockout mice, we identified two new HLA-DR1-restricted HIV-1 Gag p24-derived epitopes (Gag321–340 and Gag331–350) and confirmed the immunogenicity of seven that have been previously described. The human relevance was confirmed for the two new ones (Gag321–340 and Gag331–350) assaying peripheral blood mononuclear cells from HLA-DR1+ HIV-1-infected long-term asymptomatic subjects and showing that Gag331–350 could prime CD4+ T cells from two HLA-DR1+ HIV-1 seronegative donors in vitro. Seven of these epitopes, structurally conserved among HIV-1 clade B isolates, were selected for a comparative evaluation of their Th1 helper potential by immunizing HLA-A02.01/HLA-DR1-transgenic, H-2 class I/class II knockout mice with recombinant mouse invariant chain constructs in which each helper epitope was inserted in association with two reporter HIV-1-derived HLA-A02.01-restricted CD8+ T cell epitopes. A T helper effect was demonstrated in all cases, and was particularly strong with epitopes Gag301–320, Gag321–340 and Gag271–290, which should, therefore, be considered in the design of new vaccines.