IMR Press / FBL / Volume 27 / Issue 6 / DOI: 10.31083/j.fbl2706170
Open Access Original Research
In Vitro Model of Suppression of the Alloantigen Response by Tolerogenic Dendritic Cells Transfected with Personalized DNA Constructs Encoding HLA Epitopes
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1 Federal State Budgetary Scientific Institution “Research Institute of Fundamental and Clinical Immunology” (RIFCI), 630099 Novosibirsk, Russia
2 State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology “Vector”, 630559 Koltsovo, Russia
3 V. Zelman Institute for Medicine and Psychology, Novosibirsk State University, 630090 Novosibirsk, Russia
*Correspondence: (Sergey V. Sennikov)
Academic Editor: Graham Pawelec
Front. Biosci. (Landmark Ed) 2022, 27(6), 170;
Submitted: 16 December 2021 | Revised: 4 March 2022 | Accepted: 12 May 2022 | Published: 30 May 2022
Copyright: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by IMR Press.
This is an open access article under the CC BY 4.0 license.

Background: A search for efficient graft rejection modulation techniques for the promotion of durable engraftment remains to be a matter of close study all over the world. Despite the variety of immunosuppressive drugs, the schemes currently used show a lack of selectivity and have a number of side effects. Here we investigated an approach for the induction of antigen-specific tolerance in a human “stimulator-responder” model in vitro, using dendritic cells (DCs) transfected with designed DNA constructs encoding the stimulator’s major histocompatibility complex (MHC) epitopes. Methods: The object of the study is peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from 10 healthy donors. To induce antigen-specific tolerance, personalized DNA constructs were created for five responder–stimulator pairs, based on the sequences of donors’ and recipients’ MHCs. DNA sequencing was performed to select epitopes for incorporation into genetic constructs. A mixed lymphocyte culture assay was used (i) to assess the proliferative response in both directions for all possible stimulator–responder pairs (90 reactions) and (ii) to assess the tolerogenic properties of the generated transfected DCs (5 reactions). Results: A significant increase in the amounts of FoxP3+ CD4+CD25+ cells and in IL-10 production was shown in culture of donor mononuclear cells after co-cultivation with the responder’s dendritic cells transfected with donor-specific plasmids. The tolerogenic cultures generated using tolerogenic DCs transfected with MHC epitopes had a significantly greater ability to inhibit the proliferation of autologous MNCs in response to an allogeneic MHC stimulus. Conclusions: The produced DCs transfected with DNA constructs against HLA stimulating epitopes exhibited tolerogenic properties and may be used to develop antigen-specific tolerance. Thus, we proposed a perspective approach to the induction of antigen-specific tolerance, which should subsequently be studied for use in clinical practice.

mediated immune suppression
mixed lymphocyte culture
T regulatory cells
tolerogenic dendritic cells
DNA constructs
Fig. 1.
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