Immunomodulation by BCG and Synthetic Bacterial-Like Adjuvants

  • Louis Chedid


Various substances extracted from animal sources and also from plants, bacteria, viruses or parasites, have been shown capable of regulating the immune response. However the most studied and probably the strongest exogenous immunomodulators are bacteria and their products (25). Attempts at isolating chemically well- defined agents are justified and timely as they may lead to preparations that retain the therapeutic values which are required yet cause less toxicity. Indeed although BCG and C. parvum have been shown to be dramatically effective in certain experimental models, investigators are well aware of the fact that they contain a great variety of heterogeneous antigens, some of which could cross-react to host’s tissues (8, 10, 52) or produce certain side effects, or even, following dose and mode of administration, unexpected immune responses (for instance tumor enhancement instead of rejection (54)). The recent development of synthetic immunomodulators of low molecular weight has renewed interest to the field of adjuvants. What is particularly appealing is the possibility that one can now tailor the structure of these molecules in such a way as to use them effectively to influence pre-selected components of the immune system. Certain of these molecules such as polynucleotides (25), peptide analogs of tuftsin (51) or thymic factors (34), have been synthesized because of their analogy to host products. Others have been produced because they represent analogy with microbial products (11). It is our purpose today to select in this vast arsenal synthetic mycobacterial-like adjuvants. These derivatives can be distributed according to their structure in the following classes:
  1. a)

    glycolipids such as cord factor;

  2. b)

    glycopeptides such as muramyl peptides;

  3. c)


  4. d)




Fatty Acid Derivative Adjuvant Activity Muramyl Dipeptide Muramic Acid Plasmodium Knowlesi 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • Louis Chedid
    • 1
  1. 1.Groupe de Recherche n° 31 du CNRS, Immunothérapie experímentaleInstitut PasteurParis cedex 15France

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