Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) was used to enhance humoral and tumor immunity resulting from DNA immunization. The genes encoding GM-CSF and antigen were cloned onto the same plasmid backbone, but separate promoters drove expression of each gene. β-Galactosidase was used as the model antigen to generate antibody responses while the human tumor antigen, MAGE-1, was used to monitor tumor resistance. Immunization with a DNA vaccine co-expressing GM-CSF and β-gal resulted in higher antigen-specific IgG responses than immunization with antigen encoding plasmid alone or co-inoculated with GM-CSF expressing plasmid. Similarly, DNA vaccines expressing both MAGE-1 antigen and GM-CSF were more effective in protecting against B16-MAGE-1 melanoma. However, both GM-CSF co-expressing DNA vaccines and co-inoculation with plasmids encoding the cytokine or antigen enhanced the generation antigen-specific IFN-γ and IL-6 responses. These results demonstrate that co-expressing both GM-CSF and antigen on a DNA vaccine enhances humoral and tumor immune responses.
- DNA vaccine
- Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor