Corrected and Republished from: A Nonfunctional Opsonic Antibody Response Frequently Occurs after Pneumococcal Pneumonia and Is Associated with Invasive Disease

Fabian Uddén, Jonas Ahl, Nils Littorin, Kristoffer Strålin, Simon Athlin, Kristian Riesbeck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Naturally acquired opsonic antipneumococcal antibodies are commonly found in nonvaccinated adults and confer protection against infection and colonization. Despite this, only limited data exist regarding the adaptive immune response after pneumococcal exposure. To investigate the dynamics of naturally acquired antipneumococcal immunity in relation to an episode of infection, opsonic antibody activity was studied with paired acute-phase and convalescent-phase sera obtained from 54 patients with pneumococcal community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) using an opsonophagocytic assay (OPA). Results were compared with clinical characteristics and anticapsular immunoglobulin (Ig) concentrations. Interestingly, a nonfunctional opsonic antibody response (characterized by a decreased convalescent-phase serum OPA titer compared to that of the acute-phase serum or undetectable titers in both sera) was observed in 19 (35%) patients. The remaining individuals exhibited either an increased convalescent-phase OPA titer (n  =  24 [44%]) or a detectable, but unchanged, titer at both time points (n = 11 [20%]). Invasive pneumococcal disease (i.e., bacteremia) was significantly more common among patients with a nonfunctional convalescent-phase response than in patients with other convalescent-phase responses. Anticapsular Ig concentrations were higher among patients with detectable convalescent-phase OPA titers (P = 0.003), and the greatest Ig concentration increase was observed among patients with an increased convalescent-phase response (P = 0.002). Our findings indicate that an episode of pneumococcal infection may act as an immunizing event. However, in some cases when patients with CAP also suffer from bacteremia, a nonfunctional opsonic antibody response may occur. Furthermore, the results suggest that factors other than anticapsular Ig concentrations determine opsonic antibody activity in serum.IMPORTANCE Numerous reports on the dynamics of antipneumococcal immunity in relation to immunization with pneumococcal vaccines and on the prevalence of naturally acquired immunity in various populations have been published. In contrast, studies on the dynamics of the humoral immune response triggered by pneumococcal infection are scarce. This study provides valuable information that will contribute to fill this knowledge gap. Our main results indicate that a functional immune response may fail after CAP, predominantly among patients with simultaneous bacteremia.

Original languageEnglish
JournalmSphere
Volume5
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Infectious Medicine

Keywords

  • adaptive immune response
  • adaptive immunity
  • bacteremia
  • immunoglobulins
  • opsonization
  • phagocytosis
  • pneumonia
  • Streptococcus pneumoniae

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