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

Nat Immunol. 2004 Sep;5(9):934-42. doi: 10.1038/ni1102. Epub 2004 Aug 8.


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.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibody Formation / immunology*
  • Arenaviridae Infections / immunology
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Flow Cytometry
  • Lymphocyte Activation / immunology*
  • Lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus / immunology
  • Mice