Determining Adjuvant Activity on T-Cell Function In Vivo: Th Cells
Adjuvants constitute a critical component in vaccine development in terms of both stimulating and directing immune responses of a suitable profile to promote protection against a diverse range of disease targets. In the past, the field of adjuvant research was mainly dominated by empirical testing and serendipity. However, there is a strong need to develop new generations of adjuvants based on rational design, as well as a requirement to characterise and comprehend their mechanism(s) of action. Adjuvant development can be characterised as an iterative process where potential candidates are repeatedly tested in vitro and in vivo for immunogenicity and optimised in terms of formulation and delivery. Novel lead candidates of adjuvants with a suitable immunological profile relative to specific disease targets are subsequently selected and evaluated in efficacy studies. A central aspect in such a development and selection process is to determine the adjuvant activity on T-cell function in vivo. Expanding our knowledge on these mechanisms will improve our chance of developing new successful vaccines designed to target specific diseases.
Key wordsAdjuvants T-cell polarisation antigen recall cytokine profile T-cell frequency T-cell proliferation multifunctional T cells
Linda Christensen and Maria Nørtoft Sørensen are acknowledged for their excellent technical assistance. We are indebted to all colleagues, present and former, at the Department of Infectious Disease Immunology for input to the described protocols.