Pathogen recognition receptor (PRR) agonists are currently being developed and tested as adjuvants in various formulations to optimize the immunogenicity and efficacy of vaccines. Using an original in vitro approach to prime naive precursors from unfractionated human peripheral blood mononuclear cells, we assessed the influence of cyclic guanosine monophosphate-adenosine monophosphate (cGAMP), a ligand for the stimulator of interferon genes (STING), on the induction of antigen-specific CD8+ T cells. We found that 2′3′-cGAMP and 3′3′-cGAMP were especially potent adjuvants in this system, driving the expansion and maturation of functionally replete antigen-specific CD8+ T cells via the induction of type I IFNs. The biological relevance of these findings was confirmed in vivo using two mouse models, in which 2′3′-cGAMP–adjuvanted vaccination elicited protective antitumor or antiviral CD8+ T cell responses. These results identify particular isoforms of cGAMP as effective adjuvants that may find utility in the development of novel immunotherapies and vaccines.
Alice Gutjahr, Laura Papagno, Francesco Nicoli, Tomohiro Kanuma, Nozomi Kuse, Mariela Pires Cabral-Piccin, Nicolas Rochereau, Emma Gostick, Thierry Lioux, Eric Perouzel, David A. Price, Masafumi Takiguchi, Bernard Verrier, Takuya Yamamoto, Stéphane Paul, Victor Appay