BACKGROUND: Antibody Fc-mediated functions, such as antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity, contribute to vaccine-induced protection against viral infections. Fc-mediated function of anti-Ebola glycoprotein antibodies suggest that Fc-dependent activation of effector cells, including NK cells, could play a role in vaccination against Ebola virus disease. METHODS: We analysed the effect of anti-Ebola glycoprotein antibody in the serum of U.K.-based volunteers vaccinated with the novel 2-dose heterologous Adenovirus type 26.ZEBOV, Modified Vaccinia Ankara-BN-Filo vaccine regimen, on primary human NK cell activation. RESULTS: We demonstrate primary human NK cell CD107a and IFN-γ expression, combined with downregulation of CD16, in response to recombinant Ebola virus glycoprotein and post-vaccine dose 1 and dose 2 sera. These responses varied significantly with vaccine regimen and NK cell activation was found to correlate with anti-glycoprotein antibody concentration. We also reveal an impact of NK cell differentiation phenotype on antibody-dependent NK cell activation, with highly differentiated CD56dimCD57+ NK cells being the most responsive. CONCLUSIONS: This study thus highlights the dual importance of vaccine-induced antibody concentration and NK cell differentiation status in promoting Fc-mediated activation of NK cells after vaccination, raising a potential role for antibody-mediated NK cell activation in vaccine-induced immune responses.
J Infect Dis
Ebola, antibody, natural killer cell, vaccine