Role of Dendritic Cells in HIV-Immunotherapy
Ellen Van Gulck,
Viggo F. Van Tendeloo,
Zwi N. Berneman,
HIV remains one of the most important deadly infections today, due to the lack of a preventive vaccine and limited access to medical care in developing countries. In developed countries, antiretroviral therapy is available, but it can not eliminate the virus, implying that life-long therapy is necessary. Therefore, it is important that other strategies such as therapeutic vaccination will be developed to control virus replication or even eliminate the virus. The major obstacles towards such a strategy are the huge variability of the virus and the profound HIV-induced immune dysfunction. In this review we focus on dendritic cell based immunotherapies against HIV. To develop an efficient immunotherapy, several elements should be taken into account such as which antigen and loading strategy to use, how to deliver the immunogen, how to optimize the interaction between antigenic peptide and T cells and avoid tolerance. Clearly, to develop an immunotherapy to complement the effect of HAART, it is not sufficient to enhance T cell responses against a consensus sequence or against the prevailing plasma virus. Broad and potent immune responses are needed to suppress the entire quasispecies, including the latent reservoir, and to prevent any escape.
Keywords: dendritic cells, immunotherapy, HIV, mRNA
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