- Top of page
- Materials and methods
B cells express two critical deaminases in the development of adaptive and innate immunity. Activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AID) functions in class switch recombination, somatic hypermutation and may result in affinity maturation of antibodies. Apolipoprotein B mRNA-editing enzyme catalytic polypeptide-like 3G (APOBEC3G; A3G) is an innate anti-retroviral factor that inhibits HIV replication. We have studied a number of B-cell agonists with the aim of identifying the most effective agents that will up-regulate both deaminases and thereby enhance adaptive and innate immunity. CD40 ligand (CD40L) with interleukin-4 or HLA-class II antibodies significantly up-regulated both AID and A3G in isolated human CD19+ B cells. The functions of these deaminases were demonstrated by enhancement of B-cell surface expression of IgA and IgG and inducing significantly higher IgA and IgG4 antibodies. An enhanced A3G function was then demonstrated by inhibition of HIV-1 replication in co-culture of CD4+ T cells with autologous B cells, treated with CD40L and CD4 or HLA antibodies, compared with unstimulated human B cells. The dual B-cell-induced deaminase functions may be critical in IgA and IgG antibodies inhibiting pre-entry and A3G that of post-entry HIV-1 transmission and suggests a novel strategy of immunization, especially relevant to mucosal infections.