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The creation of novel humanized mouse models for the assessment of innovative immunotherapies and vaccine evaluation

Abstract : Animal models play critical roles in pre-clinical researches, while there are still several limitations. The physiological and immunological states in murine and non-human primates are radically district from those of mankind, especially the MHC restriction, which cannot eliminate the influence of species specificity in pre-clinical experiments.The aim of our work was to generate a higher level of “humanized” transgenic mice which could mimic human immune responses with more accuracy and reliability; furthermore, to apply the novel models in the evaluation of human transplantation, the identification of new epitopes, and the evaluation of candidate vaccines and drugs.In the first part of the study, novel immuno-deficient HLA transgenic mice "HUMAMICE" (HLA-A2+/+/DR1+/+/ H-2-β2m-/-/IAβ-/-/Rag2-/-/IL-2rγ-/-/Perf-/- mice) were established, which expressed human HLA molecules instead of murine H-2 and present no murine lymphocytes. This immuno-deficient status was reversed by transferring the functional HLA-matched hPBMCs and then producing mice with an immuno-competent status with a functional human immune system, led to high lymphocytes engraftment rates without GvHD. Immunization of HBsAg vaccine resulted in robust and reproducible production of specific antibodies. Inconclusion, these results indicated that the hPBMCs-HUMAMICE model represents a promising model to dissect human immune responses towards human diseases.In the second part of this study, the Chinese/East Asian HLA dominated HLA-A11/DR1(HLA-A11+/+/DR1+/+/H-2-β2m-/-/IAβ-/-) transgenic mouse strain was established. This novel mouse strain possesses HLA-restricted characteristic and a normal ability to respond to antigens. Immunization of mice with a recombinant HBV vaccine or a recombinant HIV-1 protein resulted in the generation of IFN-γ-producing cytotoxic T lymphocytes and specific antibodies. Furthermore, we identified two HLA-A11 restricted epitopes of EBOV GP protein and four of MERS-CoV S protein. Above all, HLA-A11/DR1 mice could facilitate the identification of Chinese dominant HLA-restricted CTL and Th epitopes and provide a new promising technical tool to understand immunological mechanisms and new vaccines.Taken together, we created two novel and promising humanize mouse models carrying human HLA restriction which could apply as pathogen infection models, and study tumors, transplantation mechanism, and the invention and evaluation of vaccines and drugs.
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Submitted on : Monday, October 22, 2018 - 12:09:09 PM
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Yang Zeng. The creation of novel humanized mouse models for the assessment of innovative immunotherapies and vaccine evaluation. Immunology. Université Paris Saclay (COmUE), 2018. English. ⟨NNT : 2018SACLS327⟩. ⟨tel-01900581⟩

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