Immunology

Rising to the Vaccine Challenge

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Science  01 Jun 2001:
Vol. 292, Issue 5522, pp. 1613
DOI: 10.1126/science.292.5522.1613a

Strategies for vaccine development focus largely on the dendritic cell because of its capacity for initiating and guiding T cell- mediated immune responses. With the goal of activating dendritic cells in order to evoke immunity to tumors and pathogens, Stubbs et al. have turned to yeast as a vehicle. Inoculation of mice with recombinant Saccharomyces cerevisiae that expressed antigens derived from tumors elicited specific cytotoxic T cell responses that protected mice against subsequent tumor challenge. Exposure of dendritic cells to yeast in vitro resulted in efficient antigen presentation and the increased expression of costimulatory molecules and IL-12, a cytokine required for cell-mediated immunity. The natural adjuvant activity of yeast and the ease by which novel antigens can be expressed in this microorganism could offer a practical approach to vaccination in a wide range of immunological settings. — SJS

Nature Med.7, 625 (2001).

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