Cover image for Vol. 38 Issue 10

Edited By: Andrew Moore

Online ISSN: 1521-1878


Immunology, innate and acquired immunity, antigen processing, antibodies, immunomodulation, auto-immunity, allergies, vaccine development

Below we have assembled a collection of our most recent articles on various topics surrounding immunology. The collection will be updated regularly. We wish you enjoyable reading!

For the latest news in Immunology, please also take a look at the following Facebook page.

For further reading, please visit the Encyclopedia of Life SciencesELS-Logo entries under the topic Immunology.

The European Journal of Immunology has put together a virtual issue with reviews based on work presented at the last European Congress of Immunology: ECI 2015 Review Series and another virtual issue with articles from the speakers at the CD1-MR1 2015 Meeting in Australia: CD1-MR1 Virtual Issue

Innate immunity against molecular mimicry: Examining galectin-mediated antimicrobial activity
Connie M. Arthur, Seema R. Patel, Amanda Mener, Nourine A. Kamili, Ross M. Fasano, Erin Meyer, Annie M. Winkler, Martha Sola-Visner, Cassandra D. Josephson and Sean R. Stowell, BioEssays, Volume 37, Issue 12, December 2015, pages 1327–1337.

adaptive immunity, carbohydrates, galectins, innate immunity, lectins, microbes

Galectins, innate immune lectins expressed at key interfaces of host-microbial interactions, appear to specifically target microbes that decorate themselves in self-like antigens. As immunological tolerance limits the ability of adaptive immunity to target molecules that look like self, these innate immune factors appear to fill an important gap in adaptive immunity, and therefore project individuals against microbes that utilize molecular mimicry.

NIK1, a host factor specialized in antiviral defense or a novel general regulator of plant immunity?
Joao P. B. Machado, Otavio J. B. Brustolini, Giselle C. Mendes, Anésia A. Santos and Elizabeth P. B. Fontes, BioEssays, Volume 37, Issue 11, November 2015, pages 1236–1242.

begomoviruses, immune receptor, immune responses, NIK1, NSP-interacting kinase, plant antiviral immunity, translation suppression

Plants and animals use innate immunity as a first defense against pathogens. The NSP-Interacting Kinase 1 (NIK1), a receptor-like kinase, is involved in plant virus defense. Here, we review recent work implicating a translational control arm of the NIK1-mediated signaling in antiviral immunity. We also present new data suggesting that NIK1 might interfere with innate immune response in general.

Evolution of vertebrate adaptive immunity: Immune cells and tissues, and AID/APOBEC cytidine deaminases
Masayuki Hirano, BioEssays, Volume 37, Issue 8, August 2015, pages 877–887.

adaptive immunity, AID/APOBC, evolution, lymphocytes, lymphoid tissue

Three types of lymphocytes, one B-like and two T-like, are an essential feature of vertebrate adaptive immunity. A common ancestor of jawed and jawless vertebrates evolved a genetic program for the development of prototypic lymphoid cells as a foundation for an adaptive immune system 500 million years ago.

Modification of pro-inflammatory signaling by dietary components: The plasma membrane as a target
Anna Ciesielska and Katarzyna Kwiatkowska, BioEssays, Volume 37, Issue 7, July 2015, pages 789-801.

Also Watch the Video Abstract for this article.

cholesterol, lipopolysaccharide, polyphenols, polyunsaturated fatty acids, raft domains, alpha-tocopherol, Toll-like receptor 4

Cholesterol, saturated, and trans fatty acids, abundant in “westernized” diet, can impact the architecture of plasma membrane rafts, a process that ultimately potentiates LPS-induced pro-inflammatory signaling of TLR4. A therapeutic effect can be achieved by enrichment of the diet with anti-inflammatory compounds affecting membrane organization, like α-tocopherol, polyunsaturated fatty acids, and polyphenols.

Structure-guided insights on the role of NS1 in flavivirus infection
David L. Akey, W.Clay Brown, Joyce Jose, Richard J. Kuhn and Janet L. Smith, BioEssays, Volume 37, Issue 5, May 2015, pages 489-494.

Also read the "Idea to watch" on this article by Marie Flamand.

amphiphilic proteins, dengue virus, flavivirus, non-structural protein 1, NS1, structural biology, West Nile virus

Flaviviruses cause a large number of diseases, including dengue, West Nile, and yellow fever. Flavivirus non-structural protein 1 (NS1) is essential for both viral genome replication and immune response evasion. Crystal and EM structures of NS1 provide insight into the architecture of both membrane bound NS1 and secreted hexameric NS1.

Soma-to-germline feedback is implied by the extreme polymorphism at IGHV relative to MHC
Edward J. Steele and Sally S. Lloyd, BioEssays, Volume 37, Issue 5, May 2015, pages 557-569.

IGHV, MHC, ancestral haplotypes, polymorphic frozen blocks, somatic hypermutation, soma-to-germline inheritance

Somatic mutations in CDR1 and CDR2 (red) or CDR 3 regions (green) of VDJ genes are clonally selected in B lymphocytes. RNA or cDNA copies penetrate Weismann's Barrier for targeted homologous integration (x, gene conversion) of the V portions (harboring CDR1, 2) into similar germline VH segments.

One-way trip: Influenza virus' adaptation to gallinaceous pultry may limit its pandemic potential
Jason S. Long, Camilla T. Benfield and Wendy S. Barclay, BioEssays, Volume 37, Issue 2, February 2015, pages 204-212.

H5N1, H7N9, influenza, pandemic, poultry

Adaptation of influenza viruses to poultry results in altered receptor binding, increased pH of fusion of the haemagglutinin and neuraminidase stalk deletions, which may compromise human-to-human transmission. We suggest a trade-off exists between high pathogenicity and transmissibility since HA stability may confer greater susceptibility to control by IFITM-3.

Pre-birth world and the development of the immune system: Mum's diet affects our adult health
Manuela Ferreira and Henrique Veiga-Fernandes, BioEssays, Volume 36, Issue 12, December 2014, pages 1213-1220.

infection, innate lymphoid cells, maternal diet, secondary lymphoid organs, vitamin A

Maternal nutrition has a major impact on the developing immune system, hence influencing the future health of the progeny. Recent findings revealed that retinoic acid, derived from the maternal diet intake of vitamin A, is critical for the development of secondary lymphoid organs in the embryo, such as lymph nodes and Peyer's patches, which in turn pre-set the efficiency of adaptive immune responses throughout life.

Mild cold-stress depresses immune responses: Implications for cancer models involving laboratory mice
Michelle N. Messmer, Kathleen M. Kokolus, Jason W.-L. Eng, Scott I. Abrams and Elizabeth A. Repasky, BioEssays, Volume 36, Issue 9, September 2014, pages 884-891.

cancer, immunology, murine model, norepinephrine, stress, T cells, thermoregulation

Ambient temperature significantly impacts murine physiology, altering disease susceptibility, with important implications for pre-clinical cancer models. Specifically, chronic cold-stress suppresses immune responses, contributing to increased tumor incidence and disease burden in mice. Implications for human disease and means to improve pre-clinical models are discussed.

Keeping your armour intact: How HIV-1 evades detection by the innate immune system
Jonathan Maelfait, Elena Seiradake and Jan Rehwinkel, BioEssays, Volume 36, Issue 7, July 2014, pages 649-657.

cGAS, CypA, cytosolic DNA sensor, dendritic cells, HIV-1, HIV-1 capsid, innate antiviral immunity

Cellular proteins including cyclophilin A (CypA) interact with the capsid (CA) of HIV-1. Recent work shows that wild-type CA prevents the induction of an interferon (IFN) response. Increased CypA binding to mutated CA results in abortive infection and activation of the innate immune sensor cGAS that detects exposed cDNA.

Evolution of adaptive immunity: Implications of a third lymphocyte lineage in lampreys
Natsuko Kishishita and Fumikiyo Nagawa, BioEssays, Volume 36, Issue 3, March 2014, pages 244-250.

antigen receptor, jawless vertebrate, leucine-rich repeat, lymphocyte lineage, somatic diversification, variable lymphocyte receptor

Hirano et al. showed that the antigen receptor VLRC is expressed on a third lymphocyte lineage, which may be equivalent to the γδ T-cell lineage. The existence of three major lymphocyte lineages and their development patterns suggest that these cell lineages were present in the common vertebrate ancestor approximately 500 million years ago.

Do all creatures possess an acquired immune system of some sort?
Jacob Rimer, Irun R. Cohen and Nir Friedman, BioEssays, Volume 36, Issue 3, March 2014, pages 273-281.

adaptive immunity, CRISPR, DSCAM, innate immunity, RNAi

We propose that all organisms express both innate and adaptive/acquired immunity. Acquired immune manifestations vary between species, but all use recognition molecules not directly encoded in the inherited genome, and all serve a similar function – allowing individuals to learn from their own immune experience, thus promoting species survival.

Are human endogenous retroviruses pathogenic? An approach to testing the hypothesis
George R. Young, Jonathan P. Stoye and George Kassiotis, BioEssays, Volume 35, Issue 9, September 2013, pages 794-803.

autoimmunity, cancer, endogenous retrovirus, integrations, mutagenesis, pathogenesis

The human genome contains numerous and repetitive human endogenous retroviruses (HERVs), relics of ancestral infection. Their mere presence in the genome, as well as distinct nucleic acid intermediates of retroviral replication and proteins produced by intact open reading frames may cause or contribute to pathology through the mechanism depicted.

X-chromosome-encoded microRNA-19 and -18 are possible modulators of female immunity
Michael P. Gantier, BioEssays, Volume 35, Issue 8, August 2013, page 671.

Pegylated IL-10 induces cancer immunity
John B. Mumm and Martin Oft, BioEssays, Volume 35, Issue 7, July 2013, pages 623-631.

cancer immune therapy, CD8+ T cells, cytotoxic T cells, IFN-gamma, major histocompatibility complex, pegylated IL-10

Pegylated IL-10 induces several essential components for cancer immunity: expansion of tumor resident CD8+ T cells, expression of IFN-γ and cytotoxic enzymes in tumor resident CD8+ T cells and antigen presentation within the tumor. PEG-IL-10 treatment leads to tumor rejection and long lasting tumor immunity.

The nuclear import machinery is a determinant of influenza virus host adaptation
Patricia Resa-Infante and Gülsah Gabriel, BioEssays, Volume 35, Issue 1, January 2013, pages 23-27.

host adaptation, importin, influenza, nuclear transport, polymerase

Importin-α isoforms possess multiple functions carried out on both sites of the nuclear envelope. Influenza viruses utilize importin-α functions directly related to the nuclear import of cargo proteins or other functions beyond transport to regulate polymerase activity in the nucleus of the host cell.

Sex influences immune responses to viruses, and efficacy of prophylaxis and treatments for viral disease
Sabra L. Klein, BioEssays, Volume 34, Issue 12, December 2012, pages 1050-1059.

hepatitis, herpes simplex virus, HIV, influenza, sex difference

Females mount higher immune responses to viral infections than males, which can result in faster clearance of viruses, but also contributes to increased development of immunopathology. Responses to and the outcome of vaccination and antiviral drug treatments for viral diseases also differ between the sexes.

Improved vaccines through targeted manipulation of the body's immunological risk-assessment?
Leif E. Sander, BioEssays, Volume 34, Issue 10, October 2012, pages 876-884.

host pathogen interaction, immunological risk assessment, immunotherapy, vaccination, vita-PAMP

Microbial threat levels physiologically correlate with the robustness of resulting immune responses (blue line). Threat evaluation could be harnessed to skew this correlation (red line) to improve vaccine efficiency. Blue circle: low threat stimulus (e.g. dead microbes); blue circle filled with red: high threat stimulus (e.g. viable microbes); and red circle: modified low threat stimulus (e.g. killed microbes?+?vita-PAMPs).