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Human Infant Memory B Cell and CD4+ T Cell Responses to HibMenCY-TT Glyco-Conjugate Vaccine.

PloS one (2015-07-21)
Angela Fuery, Peter C Richmond, Andrew J Currie
ABSTRACT

Carrier-specific T cell and polysaccharide-specific B cell memory responses are not well characterised in infants following glyco-conjugate vaccination. We aimed to determine if the number of Meningococcal (Men) C- and Y- specific memory B cells and; number and quality of Tetanus Toxoid (TT) carrier-specific memory CD4+ T cells are associated with polysaccharide-specific IgG post HibMenCY-TT vaccination. Healthy infants received HibMenCY-TT vaccine at 2, 4 and 6 months with a booster at 12 months. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells were isolated and polysaccharide-specific memory B cells enumerated using ELISpot. TT-specific memory CD4+ T cells were detected and phenotyped based on CD154 expression and intracellular TNF-α, IL-2 and IFN-γ expression following stimulation. Functional polysaccharide-specific IgG titres were measured using the serum bactericidal activity (SBA) assay. Polysaccharide-specific Men C- but not Men Y- specific memory B cell frequencies pre-boost (12 months) were significantly associated with post-boost (13 months) SBA titres. Regression analysis showed no association between memory B cell frequencies post-priming (at 6 or 7 months) and SBA at 12 months or 13 months. TT-specific CD4+ T cells were detected at frequencies between 0.001 and 0.112 as a percentage of CD3+ T cells, but their numbers were not associated with SBA titres. There were significant negative associations between SBA titres at M13 and cytokine expression at M7 and M12. Induction of persistent polysaccharide-specific memory B cells prior to boosting is an important determinant of secondary IgG responses in infants. However, polysaccharide-specific functional IgG responses appear to be independent of the number and quality of circulating carrier-specific CD4+ T cells after priming.

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