Interleukin-6 has differential influence on the ability of adjuvant formulations to potentiate antibody responses to a Plasmodium falciparum blood-stage vaccine

Vaccine. 2007 Sep 4;25(36):6598-603. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2007.06.057. Epub 2007 Jul 19.


The efficacy of vaccine adjuvants can be influenced by the immunological environment of the host, depending on the mechanism(s) by which they exert their immunopotentiating activities. Interleukin-6 is a pleiotropic cytokine that has a broad range of biological activities on immune and non-immune cells. We investigated the role of IL-6 on the ability of nine adjuvant formulations to induce antibody responses to the Plasmodium falciparum MSP1-19 malaria vaccine, using IL-6-/- (KO) mice. Results showed that some adjuvants, i.e. MPL-SE, CFA/IFA, ISA720/QS21/MPL, depended on IL-6 for their efficacy, while others exhibited increased potency in its absence. The efficacy of adjuvants in the IL-6 KO environment cannot be solely attributed to their ability to stimulate antigen-specific cellular responses, suggesting that other biological activities of IL-6 are also important. The results further suggest that two adjuvants utilized dissimilar pathways to potentiate the same type of immune response.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / administration & dosage
  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / physiology
  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Protozoan / blood
  • Antibodies, Protozoan / immunology
  • Antibody Formation
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Female
  • Immunoglobulins / blood
  • Immunoglobulins / immunology
  • Interleukin-6 / genetics
  • Interleukin-6 / immunology
  • Interleukin-6 / physiology*
  • Malaria Vaccines / administration & dosage
  • Malaria Vaccines / immunology*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Plasmodium falciparum / immunology*


  • Adjuvants, Immunologic
  • Antibodies, Protozoan
  • Immunoglobulins
  • Interleukin-6
  • Malaria Vaccines