Parenteral vaccination protects against transcervical infection with Chlamydia trachomatis and generate tissue-resident T cells post-challenge

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  • Nina Dieu Nhien Tran Nguyen, Statens Serum Institut
  • ,
  • Anja W. Olsen, Statens Serum Institut
  • ,
  • Emma Lorenzen, Statens Serum Institut
  • ,
  • Peter Andersen, Statens Serum Institut
  • ,
  • Malene Hvid
  • Frank Follmann, Statens Serum Institut
  • ,
  • Jes Dietrich, Statens Serum Institut

The optimal protective immunity against Chlamydia trachomatis (C.t.) is still not fully resolved. One of the unresolved issues concerns the importance of resident immunity, since a recent study showed that optimal protection against a transcervical (TC) infection required genital tissue-resident memory T cells. An important question in the Chlamydia field is therefore if a parenteral vaccine strategy, inducing only circulating immunity primed at a nonmucosal site, should be pursued by Chlamydia vaccine developers. To address this question we studied the protective efficacy of a parenteral Chlamydia vaccine, formulated in the Th1/Th17 T cell-inducing adjuvant CAF01. We found that a parenteral vaccination induced significant protection against a TC infection and against development of chronic pathology. Protection correlated with rapid recruitment of Th1/Th17 T cells to the genital tract (GT), which efficiently prevented infection-driven generation of low quality Th1 or Th17 T cells, and instead maintained a pool of high quality multifunctional Th1/Th17 T cells in the GT throughout the infection. After clearance of the infection, a pool of these cells settled in the GT as tissue-resident Th1 and Th17 cells expressing CD69 but not CD103, CD49d, or CCR7, where they responded rapidly to a reinfection. These results show that a nonmucosal parenteral strategy inducing Th1 and Th17 T cells mediates protection against both infection with C.t. as well as development of chronic pathology, and lead to post-challenge protective tissue-resident memory immunity in the genital tract.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7
Journalnpj Vaccines
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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