Engineering of in vivo immune responses to DNA immunization via codelivery of costimulatory molecule genes

Nat Biotechnol. 1997 Jul;15(7):641-6. doi: 10.1038/nbt0797-641.


Nucleic acid immunization is a novel vaccination technique to induce antigen-specific immune responses. We have developed expression cassettes for cell surface markers CD80 and CD86, two functionally related costimulatory molecules that play an important role in the induction of T cell-mediated immune responses. Coimmunization of these expression plasmids, along with plasmid DNA encoding for HIV-1 antigens, did not result in any significant change in the humoral response; however, we observed a dramatic increase in cytotoxic T-lymphocyte (CTL) induction as well as T-helper cell proliferation after the coadministration of CD86 genes. In contrast, coimmunization with a CD80 expression cassette resulted in a minor, but positive increase in T-helper cell or CTL responses. This strategy may be of value for the generation of rationally designed vaccines and immune therapeutics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibody Formation
  • Antigens, CD / genetics
  • B7-1 Antigen / genetics
  • B7-2 Antigen
  • Base Sequence
  • Biotechnology
  • DNA Primers / genetics
  • Humans
  • Immunization
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / genetics
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Protein Engineering
  • T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer / immunology
  • Vaccines, DNA / genetics*
  • Vaccines, DNA / pharmacology*


  • Antigens, CD
  • B7-1 Antigen
  • B7-2 Antigen
  • CD86 protein, human
  • Cd86 protein, mouse
  • DNA Primers
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • Vaccines, DNA