Research Papers: Immunology:

Systematic identification of immunodominant CD4+ T cell responses to HpaA in Helicobacter pylori infected individuals

Jian Hu, Li Chen, Wuchen Yang, Bin Li, Heqiang Sun, Shanshan Wei, Yafei He, Zhuo Zhao, Shiming Yang, Quanming Zou, Weisan Chen, Hong Guo and Chao Wu _

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:54380-54391. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.11092

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Jian Hu1,2,*, Li Chen3,4,*, Wuchen Yang1,5, Bin Li3, Heqiang Sun3, Shanshan Wei1, Yafei He1, Zhuo Zhao3, Shiming Yang1, Quanming Zou3, Weisan Chen6, Hong Guo1 and Chao Wu3

1 Department of Gastroenterology, The Second Affiliated Hospital, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, PR China

2 Department of Intensive Care Unit, Chengdu Military General Hospital, Chengdu, PR China

3 National Engineering Research Center of Immunological Products, Department of Microbiology and Biochemical Pharmacy, College of Pharmacy, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, PR China

4 Department of Blood Transfusion, The Second Affiliated Hospital, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, PR China

5 Department of Hematology, The Second Affiliated Hospital, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, PR China

6 T cell Laboratory, La Trobe Institute for Molecular Science, School of Molecular Science, La Trobe University, Bundoora, Victoria, Australia

* These authors have contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Chao Wu, email:

Hong Guo, email:

Keywords: Helicobacter pylori; HpaA; immunodominant epitope; HLA-DRB1*0901; Immunology and Microbiology Section; Immune response; Immunity

Received: November 17, 2015 Accepted: June 29, 2016 Published: August 05, 2016


In mice, antigen-specific CD4+ T cell response is indispensible for the protective immunity against Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori). It has been demonstrated that neuraminyllactose-binding hemagglutinin (HpaA) immunization protected mice from H. pylori infection in a CD4+ T cell dependent manner. However, much remains unclear concerning the human CD4+ T cell responses to HpaA. We conducted a systematic study here to explore the immunodominant, HpaA-specific CD4+ T cell responses in H. pylori infected individuals. We found that HpaA-specific CD4+ T cell responses varied remarkably in their magnitude and had broad epitope-specificity. Importantly, the main responses focused on two regions: HpaA76-105 and HpaA130-159. The HLA-DRB1*0901 restricted HpaA142-159 specific CD4+ T cell response was the most immunodominant response at a population level. The immunodominant epitope HpaA142-159 was naturally presented and highly conserved. We also demonstrated that it was not the broad peptide specificity, but the strength of HpaA specific CD4+ T cell responses associated with gastric diseases potentially caused by H. pylori infection. Such investigation will aid development of novel vaccines against H. pylori infection.

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