The human IL-15 superagonist ALT-803 directs SIV-specific CD8+ T cells into B-cell follicles

Gabriela M. Webb, Shengbin Li, Gwantwa Mwakalundwa, Joy M. Folkvord, Justin M. Greene, Jason S. Reed, Jeffery J. Stanton, Alfred W. Legasse, Theodore Hobbs, Lauren D. Martin, Byung S. Park, James B. Whitney, Emily K. Jeng, Hing C. Wong, Douglas F. Nixon, R. Brad Jones, Elizabeth Connick, Pamela J. Skinner, Jonah B. Sacha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


Sequestering of latent HIV in follicular helper T cells within B-cell follicles that largely exclude cytotoxic T cells is a major barrier to cellular immune-based approaches to eradicate HIV. Here, we show that the clinical-grade human interleukin-15 (IL-15) superagonist ALT-803 activates and redirects simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV)-specific CD81 T cells from the peripheral blood into B-cell follicles. In agreement with the increased trafficking of SIVspecific cytotoxic T cells to sites of cryptic viral replication, lymph nodes of elite controlling macaques contained fewer cells expressing SIV RNA or harboring SIV DNA post-ALT-803 treatment. These data establish ALT-803 as an immunotherapeutic for HIV and other chronic viral pathogens that evade host immunity by persisting in B-cell follicles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)76-84
Number of pages9
JournalBlood Advances
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 23 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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