Design and evaluation of surface and adjuvant modified PLGA microspheres for uptake by dendritic cells to improve vaccine responses

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Designing strategies for targeting antigens to dendritic cells is a major goal in vaccinology. Here, PLGA (poly lactic-co-glycolic acid) microspheres and with several surface modifications that affect to their uptake by human blood primary dendritic cells and monocytes have been evaluated. Higher uptake was found by all the cell types when cationic microspheres (PLGA modified with polyethylene imine) were used. These cationic particles were in vivo evaluated in mice. In addition, MPLA1 or poly(I:C)2 and α-GalCer3 were also encapsulated to address their adjuvant effect. All the microspheres were able to produce humoral immune responses, albeit they were higher for cationic microspheres. Moreover, surface charge seemed to have a role on biasing the immune response; cationic microspheres induced higher IFN-γ levels, indicative of Th1 activation, while unmodified ones mainly triggered IL4 and IL17A release, showing Th2 activation. Thus, we have shown here the potential and versatility of these MS, which may be tailored to needs.

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