Effect of growth hormone and IgG aggregates on dendritic cells activation and T-cells polarization

Immunol Cell Biol. 2017 Mar;95(3):306-315. doi: 10.1038/icb.2016.100. Epub 2016 Oct 7.


Patients treated with therapeutic biological products (BP) frequently develop anti-drug antibodies (ADA) with potential neutralizing capacities leading to loss of clinical response or serious side effects. BP aggregates have been suggested to promote immunogenicity, thus enhancing ADA production. Dendritic cells (DC) are key effectors in T-cell and B-cell fates, and the subsequent generation of immunogenicity. The objective of this work was to determine if BP aggregates can participate to DC maturation and T-cell activation. We compared aggregates from three different proteins: human growth hormone (hGH), Rituximab, a chimeric anti-CD20 antibody and a serum-purified human IgG1. All three proteins underwent a stir stress, generating comparable populations of aggregated particles. Maturation of human monocyte-derived DC (moDC) upon exposure to native BPs or aggregates was evaluated in vitro. Results showed that hGH aggregates induced an increased expression of moDC co-stimulation markers, and augmented levels of IL-6, IL-8, IL-12p40, CCL2, CCL3, CCL4 and CXCL10. Both antibodies aggregates were also able to modify DC phenotype, but cytokine and chemokine productions were seen only with IL-6, IL-8, IL-12p40 and CXCL10. Aggregates-treated moDC enhanced allogenic T-cell proliferation and cytokines production, suggesting Th1 polarization with hGH, and mixed T-cell responses with antibodies aggregates. These results showed that BP aggregates provoked DC maturation, thus driving adaptive T-cell responses and polarization.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Polarity / drug effects*
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Chemokines / metabolism
  • Dendritic Cells / cytology*
  • Dendritic Cells / drug effects
  • Growth Hormone / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G / pharmacology*
  • Inflammation Mediators / metabolism
  • Phenotype
  • Protein Aggregates*
  • T-Lymphocytes / cytology*
  • T-Lymphocytes / drug effects


  • Chemokines
  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Inflammation Mediators
  • Protein Aggregates
  • Growth Hormone