Introduction Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection does minimal damage and does not induce the production of immune mediators by host epithelial cells. The induction of a pro-inflammatory immune response is necessary to break the tolerance induced by HPV. Therapeutic interventions with vaccines to induce an effective immune response have the potential to treat latent infection as well as clinically apparent lesions. The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination on peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) proliferation and cytokine gene transcription.
Methods PBMCs isolated after immunisation were incubated with HPV vaccine, phytohemagglutinin (PHA) or buffer. Cell proliferation was assessed by MTT reduction assay. RNA was extracted from PBMCs, and the relative concentration of cytokine messenger RNA (mRNA) transcripts (IFN-b, IFN-c, IL-12, TNF-a, IL-6, IL-17, or IL-10) relative to transcription of the b-actin gene was determined by real-time polymerase chain reaction.
Results PBMC proliferation in response to HPV vaccine and PHA were greater than that observed in unstimulated cells (p<0.001). Cytokine mRNAs were upregulated in stimulated PBMC cultures. The median increase in vaccine-stimulated cultures was: IFN-b=334.4 fold; IL-12=46.33 fold; IFN-c=12.64 fold; IL-6=9.07 fold; IL-17=7.33 fold; IL-10=6.47 fold; and TNF-a=2.36 fold.
Conclusion The IFN-b expression was significantly higher (p<0.05). Proliferative PBMC responses and multiple cytokine gene expression were detected in women who received the HPV vaccine.
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