Zwitterionic Polysaccharides Stimulate T Cells with No Preferential Vβ Usage and Promote Anergy, Resulting in Protection against Experimental Abscess Formation

Francesca Stingele, Blaise Corthésy, Nicole Kusy, Steven A. Porcelli, Dennis L. Kasper, Arthur O. Tzianabos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

44 Scopus citations

Abstract

Zwitterionic polysaccharides (Zps) from pathogenic bacteria, such as Bacteroides fragilis, are virulence factors responsible for abscess formation associated with intra-abdominal sepsis. The underlying cellular mechanism for abscess formation requires T cell activation. Conversely, abscess formation can be prevented by prophylactic s.c. injection of purified Zps alone, a process also dependent on T cells. Hence, the modulatory role of T cells in abscess formation was investigated. We show that Zps interact directly with T cells with fast association/dissociation kinetics. Vβ repertoire analysis using RT-PCR demonstrates that Zps have broad Vβ usage. Zps-specific hybridomas responded to a variety of other Zps, but not to a nonzwitterionic polysaccharide, indicating cross-reactivity between different Zps. Furthermore, Zps-reactive T cell hybridomas could effectively transfer protection against abscess formation. Analysis of the proliferative capacity of T cells recovered from Zps-treated animals revealed that these T cells are anergic to subsequent stimulation by the different Zps or to alloantigens in an MLR. This anergic response was relieved by addition of IL-2. Taken together, the data show that this class of polysaccharides interacts directly with T cells in a nonbiased manner to elicit an IL-2-dependent anergic response that confers protection against abscess formation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1483-1490
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Immunology
Volume172
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 1 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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