Mechanism for increased immunogenicity of vaccines that form in vivo immune complexes with the natural anti-Gal antibody

Ussama M. Abdel-Motal, Kim Wigglesworth, Uri Galili

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

48 Citations (Scopus)


Anti-Gal constitutes ∼1% of circulating IgG in humans and interacts specifically with α-gal epitopes. We reported previously that expression of α-gal epitopes on HIV gp120 and influenza virus vaccines increases immunogenicity by ∼100-fold. We hypothesize that immunogenicity of any microbial vaccine can be markedly increased by linked α-gal epitopes due to in vivo formation of immune complexes with anti-Gal and the effective internalization of such immune complexes by APC, via Fc/FcγR interaction. The increased transport to lymph nodes and processing of anti-Gal complexed vaccines internalized by APC, results in effective activation of vaccine specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, and high cellular and humoral immune response. This universal mechanism for anti-Gal mediated increased immunogenicity is demonstrated in α1,3galactosyltransferase knockout mice with ovalbumin as a model vaccine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3072-3082
Number of pages11
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 18 May 2009



  • APC
  • Anti-Gal antibody
  • Vaccine
  • α-Gal glycolipids

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • veterinary(all)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases

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