Author(s): Wallmann J, Epstein MM, Singh P, Brunner R, Szalai K,
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Abstract BACKGROUND: One of the concerns of allergen-specific immunotherapy is the possible boost of inflammatory allergen-specific T lymphocytes. To address this problem, treatment with B cell epitopes devoid of allergen-specific T cell epitopes would be a promising alternative. OBJECTIVE: In this study, we examined the therapeutic potency of a single mimotope, mimicking a structural IgE epitope of grass pollen allergen Phl p 5 in an established memory mouse model of acute allergic asthma. METHODS: In the experimental set-up, BALB/c mice were primed with intraperitoneal injections of recombinant Phl p 5a (rPhl p 5a) and subsequently aerosol challenged with the nebulized allergen. Mice developed signs of bronchial asthma including hypereosinophilia around bronchi, goblet cell hyperplasia and enhanced mucus production. RESULTS: When the mice were subsequently treated with the grass pollen mimotope coupled to keyhole limpet haemocyanin, bronchial eosinophilic inflammation and mucus hypersecretion decreased. Further, a decrease of Th2 cytokines IL-4 and IL-5 could be observed in the bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL). In contrast to rPhl p 5a, the mimotope was in vitro not able to stimulate splenocytes to proliferation or IL-5 production. Despite not affecting the levels of pre-existing IgE, vaccination with the single mimotope thus rendered anti-inflammatory effects in a mouse model of acute asthma. CONCLUSION: From our data, we conclude that vaccination with a mimotope peptide representing a single IgE epitope of the allergen Phl p 5a and being devoid of allergen-specific T cell epitopes is able to down-regulate inflammation in acute asthma.
This article was published in Clin Exp Allergy
and referenced in Journal of Allergy & Therapy