Many classical vaccines contain whole pathogens and, thus, may occasionally induce adverse effects, such as inflammation. Vaccines containing purified rAgs resolved this problem, but, owing to their low antigenicity, they require adjuvants. Recently, the use of several cytokines, including thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP), has been proposed for this purpose. However, it is difficult to use cytokines as vaccine adjuvants in clinical practice. In this study, we examined the effects of all-trans retinoic acid (atRA) on TSLP production and Ag-induced Ab production. Application of atRA onto the ear lobes of mice selectively induced TSLP production without inducing apparent inflammation. The effects appeared to be regulated via retinoic acid receptors g and a. Treatment with atRA was observed to enhance OVA-induced specific Ab production; however, this effect was completely absent in TSLP receptor–knockout mice. An enhancement in Ab production was also observed when recombinant hemagglutinin was used as the Ag. In conclusion, atRA was an effective adjuvant through induction of TSLP production. Therefore, we propose that TSLP-inducing low m.w. compounds, such as atRA, may serve as effective adjuvants for next-generation vaccines.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy