Deliberate removal of T cell help improves virus-neutralizing antibody production

Mike Recher, Karl S. Lang, Lukas Hunziker, Stefan Freigang, Bruno Eschli, Nicola L. Harris, Alexander Navarini, Beatrice M. Senn, Katja Fink, Marius Lötscher, Lars Hangartner, Raphaël Zellweger, Martin Hersberger, Alexandre Theocharides, Hans Hengartner, Rolf M. Zinkernagel

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78 Citations (Scopus)


The B cell response to lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus is characterized by a CD4+ T cell-dependent polyclonal hypergammaglobulinemia and delayed formation of virus-specific neutralizing antibodies. Here we provide evidence that, paradoxically, because of polyclonal B cell activation, virus-specific T cell help impairs the induction of neutralizing antibody responses. Experimental reduction in CD4+ T cell help in vivo resulted in potent neutralizing antibody responses without impairment of CD8+ T cell activity. These unexpected consequences of polyclonal B cell activation may affect vaccine strategies and the treatment of clinically relevant chronic bacterial, parasitic and viral infections in which hypergammaglobulinemia is regularly found.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)934-942
Number of pages9
JournalNature Immunology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2004
Externally publishedYes

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