Memory inflation following adenoviral vaccination depends on IL-21.
Gordon CL., Hutchings CL., Highton AJ., Colston JM., Provine NM., Klenerman P.
Cytomegalovirus (CMV) and non-replicating adenoviral vectors can induce expanded, sustained effector-memory CD8+ T-cell responses, termed "memory inflation". During murine CMV (MCMV) infection, CD4+ Tcells maintain inflationary virus-specific CD8+ T-cell responses via IL-2 but not IL-21. Adenovirus vector vaccination can induce phenotypically, functionally and transcriptionally similar inflationary responses, but it is not known how IL-21 influences the inflating memory response to adenoviral vaccination. Here, we show that IL-21 is an absolute requirement for induction and maintenance of vaccine-derived inflationary CD8+ T-cell responses. These data indicate that the induction pathway of inflationary Ad-LacZ T-cells is distinct from inflationary MCMV-specific T-cells and is highly dependent on IL-21. Our observations highlight a fundamental difference in the mechanism by which adenovirus vectors and MCMV drive inflationary T-cell responses.