Bacterial outer membrane lipoproteins represent potent immunogens for the design of recombinant subunit vaccines. However, recombinant lipoprotein production and purification could be a challenge notably in terms of expression yield, protein solubility, and post-translational acylation. Together with the cost effectiveness, facilitated production, and purification as well as good stability, DNA-based vaccines encoding lipoproteins could become an alternative strategy for antibacterial vaccinations. Although the immunogenicity and the efficacy of DNA-based vaccines can be demonstrated in small rodents, such vaccine candidates could request concrete optimization as they are weak immunogens in primates and humans and particularly when administered by conventional injection. Therefore, the goal of the present study was to optimize the immunogenicity of a DNA vaccine encoding an outer membrane lipoprotein. LipL32, the major outer membrane protein from pathogenic Leptospira, was selected as a model antigen. We evaluated the influence of antigen secretion, the in vivo DNA delivery by electroporation, the adjuvant co-administration, as well as the heterologous prime-boost regimen on the induction of anti-LipL32 specific immune responses. Our results clearly showed that, following transfections, a DNA construct based on the authentic full-length LipL32 gene (containing leader sequence and the N-terminus cysteine residue involved in the protein anchoring) drives antigen secretion with the same efficiency as a plasmid-encoding anchor-less LipL32 and for which the bacterial leader sequence was replaced with a viral signal peptide. The in vivo DNA delivery by electroporation drastically enhanced the production of strong Th1 responses characterized by specific IgG2a antibodies and the IFN? secretion in a restimulation assay, regardless of the DNA constructs used. In comparison with the heterologous prime-boost regimen, the homologous prime-boost vaccinations with DNA co-administrated with polyinosinic-polycytidylic acid (poly I:C) generated the highest specific IgG and IgG2a titers as well as the greatest IFN? production. Taken together, these data suggest that optimization of outer membrane lipoprotein secretion is not critical for the induction of antigen-specific responses through DNA vaccination. Moreover, the potent antibody response induced by DNA plasmid encoding lipoprotein formulated with poly I:C and delivered through electroporation provides the rationale for the design of new prophylactic vaccines against pathogenic bacteria.
Clinical trials with passive and active Alzheimer's disease (AD) vaccines suggest that early interventions are needed for improvement of cognitive and/or functional performance in patients, providing impetus for the development of safe and immunologically potent active vaccines targeting amyloid ? (A?). The AN-1792 trial has indicated that A?-specific T cells may be unsafe for humans; therefore, other vaccines based on small A? epitopes are undergoing preclinical and clinical testing.
Human papillomavirus (HPV) infections are particularly problematic for HIV + and solid organ transplant patients with compromised CD4+ T cell-dependent immunity as they produce more severe and progressive disease compared to healthy individuals. There are no specific treatments for chronic HPV infection, resulting in an urgent unmet need for a modality that is safe and effective for both immunocompromised and otherwise normal patients with recalcitrant disease. DNA vaccination is attractive because it avoids the risks of administration of live vectors to immunocompromised patients, and can induce potent HPV-specific cytotoxic T cell responses. We have developed a DNA vaccine (pNGVL4a-hCRTE6E7L2) encoding calreticulin (CRT) fused to E6, E7 and L2 proteins of HPV-16, the genotype associated with approximately 90% vaginal, vulvar, anal, penile and oropharyngeal HPV-associated cancers and the majority of cervical cancers. Administration of the DNA vaccine by intramuscular (IM) injection followed by electroporation induced significantly greater HPV-specific immune responses compared to IM injection alone or mixed with alum. Furthermore, pNGVL4a-hCRTE6E7L2 DNA vaccination via electroporation of mice carrying an intravaginal HPV-16 E6/E7-expressing syngeneic tumor demonstrated more potent therapeutic effects than IM vaccination alone. Of note, administration of the DNA vaccine by IM injection followed by electroporation elicited potent E6 and E7-specific CD8+ T cell responses and antitumor effects despite CD4+ T cell-depletion, although no antibody response was detected. While CD4+ T cell-depletion did reduce the E6 and E7-specific CD8+ T cell response, it remained sufficient to prevent subcutaneous tumor growth and to eliminate circulating tumor cells in a model of metastatic HPV-16+ cancer. Thus, the antibody response was CD4-dependent, whereas CD4+ T cell help enhanced the E6/E7-specific CD8+ T cell immunity, but was not required. Taken together, our data suggest that pNGVL4a-hCRTE6E7L2 DNA vaccination via electroporation warrants testing in otherwise healthy patients and those with compromised CD4+ T cell immunity to treat HPV-16-associated anogenital disease and cancer.
Effective multi-agent/multivalent vaccines that confer protection against more than one disease are highly desirable to the patient and to health-care professionals. Electroporation of DNA vaccines, whereby tissues injected with DNA are subjected to localized electrical currents, is an ideal platform technology that achieves protective immune responses to multivalent vaccination. Here, we describe an electroporation-based immunization technique capable of administering a cocktail of DNA vaccinations in vivo. Immune response measurements, including protection from pathogen challenge and induction of antigen-specific antibody responses and cell-mediated immune responses, are also discussed.
Induction of long-lasting immunity against viral respiratory tract infections remains an elusive goal. Using a nonhuman primate model of human respiratory syncytial virus (hRSV) infection, we compared mucosal and systemic immune responses induced by different DNA delivery approaches to a novel parenteral DNA prime-tonsillar adenoviral vector booster immunization regimen. Intramuscular (i.m.) electroporation (EP) of a DNA vaccine encoding the fusion protein of hRSV induced stronger systemic immune responses than intradermal EP, tattoo immunization, and conventional i.m. DNA injection. A single EP i.m., followed by two atraumatic tonsillar immunizations with the adenoviral vector, elicited strong systemic immune responses, an unique persistent CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cell response in the lower respiratory tract and protection from intranasal hRSV challenge. Thus, parenteral DNA priming followed by booster immunization targeted to a mucosal inductive site constitutes an effective vaccine regimen for eliciting protective immune responses at mucosal effector sites.
Plasmodium falciparum Pfs25 antigen, expressed on the surface of zygotes and ookinetes, is one of the leading targets for the development of a malaria transmission-blocking vaccine (TBV). Our laboratory has been evaluating DNA plasmid based Pfs25 vaccine in mice and non-human primates. Previously, we established that in vivo electroporation (EP) delivery is an effective method to improve the immunogenicity of DNA vaccine encoding Pfs25 in mice. In order to optimize the in vivo EP procedure and test for its efficacy in more clinically relevant larger animal models, we employed in vivo EP to evaluate the immune response and protective efficacy of Pfs25 encoding DNA vaccine in nonhuman primates (olive baboons, Papio anubis). The results showed that at a dose of 2.5mg DNA vaccine, antibody responses were significantly enhanced with EP as compared to without EP resulting in effective transmission blocking efficiency. Similar immunogenicity enhancing effect of EP was also observed with lower doses (0.5mg and 1mg) of DNA plasmids. Further, final boosting with a single dose of recombinant Pfs25 protein resulted in dramatically enhanced antibody titers and significantly increased functional transmission blocking efficiency. Our study suggests priming with DNA vaccine via EP along with protein boost regimen as an effective method to elicit potent immunogenicity of malaria DNA vaccines in nonhuman primates and provides the basis for further evaluation in human volunteers.
Protection against the avian influenza (AI) H5N1 virus is suspected to be mainly conferred by the presence of antibodies directed against the hemagglutinin (HA) protein of the virus. A single electroporation delivery of 100 or 250 ?g of a DNA vaccine construct, pCAG-HA, carrying the HA gene of strain A/Hanoi/30408/2005 (H5N1), in chickens led to the development of anti-HA antibody response in 16 of 17 immunized birds, as measured by a hemagglutination inhibition (HI) test, competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (cELISA), and an indirect ELISA. Birds vaccinated by electroporation (n = 11) were protected from experimental AI challenge with strain A/chicken/Pennsylvania/1370/1/1983 (H5N2) as judged by low viral load, absence of clinical symptoms, and absence of mortality (n = 11). In contrast, only two out of 10 birds vaccinated with the same vaccine dose (100 or 250 ?g) but without electroporation developed antibodies. These birds showed high viral loads and significant morbidity and mortality after the challenge. Seroconversion was reduced in birds electroporated with a low vaccine dose (10 ?g), but the antibody-positive birds were protected against virus challenge. Nonelectroporation delivery of a low-dose vaccine did not result in seroconversion, and the birds were as susceptible as those in the control groups that received the control pCAG vector. Electroporation delivery of the DNA vaccine led to enhanced antibody responses and to protection against the AI virus challenge. The HI test, cELISA, or indirect ELISA for anti-H5 antibodies might serve as a good predictor of the potency and efficacy of a DNA immunization strategy against AI in chickens.
Vaccination with HIV/SIV DNAs elicits potent T-cell responses. To improve humoral immune responses, we combined DNA and protein in a co-immunization protocol using in vivo electroporation in mice and macaques. DNA&protein co-immunization induced higher antibody responses than DNA or protein alone, or DNA prime/protein boost in mice. DNA&protein co-immunization induced similar levels of cellular responses as those obtained by DNA only vaccination. The inclusion of SIV or HIV Env gp120 protein did not impair the development of cellular immune responses elicited by DNA present in the vaccine regimen. In macaques, the DNA&protein co-immunization regimen also elicited higher levels of humoral responses with broader cross-neutralizing activity. Despite the improved immunogenicity of DNA&protein co-immunization, the protein formulation with the EM-005 (GLA-SE) adjuvant further increased the anti-Env humoral responses. Dissecting the contribution of EM-005, we found that its administration upregulated the expression of co-stimulatory molecules and stimulated cytokine production, especially IL-6, by dendritic cells in vivo. These terminally differentiated, mature, dendritic cells possibly promote higher levels of humoral responses, supporting the inclusion of the EM-005 adjuvant with the vaccine. Thus, DNA&protein co-immunization is a promising strategy to improve the rapidity of development, magnitude and potency of the humoral immune responses.
DNA vaccines encoding allergens are promising immunotherapeutics to prevent or to treat allergy through induction of allergen-specific Th1 responses. Despite anti-allergy effects observed in small rodents, DNA-based vaccines are weak immunogens in primates and humans and particularly when administered by conventional injection. The goal of the present study was to improve the immunogenicity of a prophylactic vaccine encoding the major house dust mite allergen Der p 2. In this context, we evaluated the influence of different DNA backbones including notably intron and CpG enriched sequence, the DNA dose, the in vivo delivery by electroporation as well as the heterologous prime boost regimen on the vaccine efficiency. We found that a minimal allergen expression level threshold must be reached to induce the production of specific antibodies but beyond this limit, the intensity of the immune response was independent on the DNA dose and allergen expression. The in vivo DNA delivery by electroporation drastically enhanced the production of specific antibodies but not the IFNg secretion. Vaccination of naïve mice with DNA encoding Der p 2 delivered by electroporation even at very low dose (2?g) prevented the development of house dust mite allergy through Th1-skewed immune response characterized by the drastic reduction of allergen-specific IgE, IL-5 and lung inflammation together with the induction of strong specific IgG2a titers and IFNg secretion. CpG cassette in the DNA backbone does not play a critical role in the efficient prophylaxis. Finally, comparable protective immune responses were observed when using heterologous DNA prime/protein boost or homologous DNA prime/boost. Taken together, these data suggest that the potent Th1 response induced by DNA-based vaccine encoding allergens through electroporation provides the rationale for the evaluation of DNA encoding Der p 2 into HDM allergy clinical trials.
The Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) and Influenza A Virus (IAV) are both two major causative agents of severe respiratory tract infections in humans leading to hospitalization and thousands of deaths each year. In this study, we evaluated the immunogenicity and efficacy of a combinatory DNA vaccine in comparison to the single component vaccines against both diseases in a mouse model. Intramuscular electroporation with plasmids expressing the hemagglutinin (HA) of IAV and the F protein of RSV induced strong humoral immune responses regardless if they were delivered in combination or alone. In consequence, high neutralizing antibody titers were detected, which conferred protection against a lethal challenge with IAV. Furthermore, the viral load in the lungs after a RSV infection could be dramatically reduced in vaccinated mice. Concurrently, substantial amounts of antigen-specific, polyfunctional CD8? T-cells were measured after vaccination. Interestingly, the cellular response to the hemagglutinin was significantly reduced in the presence of the RSV-F encoding plasmid, but not vice versa. Although these results indicate a suppressive effect of the RSV-F protein, the protective efficacy of the combinatory vaccine was comparable to the efficacy of both single-component vaccines. In conclusion, the novel combinatory vaccine against RSV and IAV may have great potential to reduce the rate of severe respiratory tract infections in humans without increasing the number of necessary vaccinations.
We evaluated the immunogenicity and protective efficacy of a DNA vaccine expressing codon-optimized envelope glycoprotein genes of Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEEV) when delivered by intramuscular electroporation. Mice vaccinated with the DNA vaccine developed robust VEEV-neutralizing antibody responses that were comparable to those observed after administration of the live-attenuated VEEV vaccine TC-83 and were completely protected from a lethal aerosol VEEV challenge. The DNA vaccine also elicited strong neutralizing antibody responses in rabbits that persisted at high levels for at least 6 months and could be boosted by a single additional electroporation administration of the DNA performed approximately 6 months after the initial vaccinations. Cynomolgus macaques that received the vaccine by intramuscular electroporation developed substantial neutralizing antibody responses and after an aerosol challenge had no detectable serum viremia and had reduced febrile reactions, lymphopenia, and clinical signs of disease compared to those of negative-control macaques. Taken together, our results demonstrate that this DNA vaccine provides a potent means of protecting against VEEV infections and represents an attractive candidate for further development.
The development of therapeutic vaccines for chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection has been hampered by host immune tolerance and the generally low magnitude and inconsistent immune responses to conventional vaccines and proposed new delivery methods. Electroporation (EP) for plasmid DNA (pDNA) vaccine delivery has demonstrated the enhanced immunogenicity of HBV antigens in various animal models. In the present study, the efficiency of the EP-based delivery of pDNA expressing various reporter genes first was evaluated in normal woodchucks, and then the immunogenicity of an analog woodchuck hepatitis virus (WHV) surface antigen (WHsAg) pDNA vaccine was studied in this model. The expression of reporter genes was greatly increased when the cellular uptake of pDNA was facilitated by EP. The EP of WHsAg-pDNA resulted in enhanced, dose-dependent antibody and T-cell responses to WHsAg compared to those of the conventional hypodermic needle injection of WHsAg-pDNA. Although subunit WHsAg protein vaccine elicited higher antibody titers than the DNA vaccine delivered with EP, T-cell response rates were comparable. However, in WHsAg-stimulated mononuclear cell cultures, the mRNA expression of CD4 and CD8 leukocyte surface markers and Th1 cytokines was more frequent and was skewed following DNA vaccination compared to that of protein immunization. Thus, the EP-based vaccination of normal woodchucks with pDNA-WHsAg induced a skew in the Th1/Th2 balance toward Th1 immune responses, which may be considered more appropriate for approaches involving therapeutic vaccines to treat chronic HBV infection.
ADVAX is a DNA-based candidate HIV vaccine that was safe but weakly immunogenic when delivered intramuscularly (IM) in humans. Studies were performed in animal models to determine whether an alternative delivery method, in vivo electroporation (EP), could improve the immunogenicity of ADVAX while maintaining an acceptable safety profile. Immunization of mice with ADVAX with or without EP at weeks 0, 3, and 6, revealed significantly higher gamma interferon ELISpot responses to all antigens in the EP groups. Antigen-specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cell responses, as quantified by intracellular cytokine staining, both improved significantly with EP. Evaluation of repeat-dose toxicity of ADVAX-EP in rabbits did not reveal any safety concerns. Biodistribution studies of ADVAX delivered IM and with EP in rats indicated that the vaccine was localized predominantly to the administration site in both groups. PCR-based quantitation of residual plasmid at Day 60 indicated that the potential for integration events into the host genome was low for both IM and EP delivery. Taken together, these data supported the clinical development of ADVAX delivered with EP in human volunteers.
Bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) is one of the major pathogens in cattle. In this study, newborn calves with maternal antibodies were vaccinated with a BVDV DNA vaccine, either by conventional intramuscular (IM) injection or with the TriGrid™ Delivery System for IM delivery (TDS-IM). The calves vaccinated with the TDS-IM developed more rapidly and effectively BVDV-specific humoral and cell-mediated immune responses in the presence of maternal antibodies. Overall, the immune responses induced by delivery with the TDS-IM remained stronger than those elicited by conventional IM injection of the BVDV DNA vaccine. Accordingly, electroporation-mediated delivery of the BVDV DNA vaccine resulted in close to complete protection from clinical signs of disease, while conventional IM administration did not fully prevent morbidity and mortality following challenge with BVDV-2. These results demonstrate the TDS-IM to be effective as a delivery system for a BVDV DNA vaccine in newborn calves in the presence of maternal antibodies, which supports the potential of electroporation as a delivery method for prophylactic DNA vaccines.
DNA vaccination is a promising immunization strategy that could be applied in the development of vaccines for a variety of prophylactic and therapeutic indications. Utilizing anthrax protective antigen as a model antigen, we demonstrate that electroporation mediated delivery enhanced the immunogenicity of DNA vaccines in nonhuman primates over 100-fold as compared to conventional intramuscular injection. Two administrations of a DNA vaccine with electroporation elicited anthrax toxin neutralizing antibody responses in 100% of rhesus macaques. Toxin neutralizing antibodies were sustained for the nearly 1-year study duration and were correlated with protection against subsequent lethal Bacillus anthracis spore challenge. Collectively, electroporation mediated DNA vaccination conferred protection comparable to that observed following vaccination with an FDA approved anthrax vaccine.
The goal of the present study was to design a vaccine that would provide universal protection against infection of humans with diverse influenza A viruses. Accordingly, protein sequences from influenza A virus strains currently in circulation (H1N1, H3N2), agents of past pandemics (H1N1, H2N2, H3N2) and zoonotic infections of man (H1N1, H5N1, H7N2, H7N3, H7N7, H9N2) were evaluated for the presence of amino acid sequences, motifs, that are predicted to mediate peptide epitope binding with high affinity to the most frequent HLA-DR allelic products. Peptides conserved among diverse influenza strains were then synthesized, evaluated for binding to purified HLA-DR molecules and for their capacity to induce influenza-specific immune recall responses using human donor peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). Accordingly, 20 epitopes were selected for further investigation based on their conservancy among diverse influenza strains, predicted population coverage in diverse ethnic groups and capacity to recall influenza-specific responses. A DNA plasmid encoding the epitopes was constructed using amino acid spacers between epitopes to promote optimum processing and presentation. Immunogenicity of the DNA vaccine was measured using HLA-DR4 transgenic mice and the TriGrid in vivo electroporation device. Vaccination resulted in peptide-specific immune responses, augmented HA-specific antibody responses and protection of HLA-DR4 transgenic mice from lethal PR8 influenza virus challenge. These studies demonstrate the utility of this vaccine format and the contribution of CD4(+) T cell responses to protection against influenza infection.
DNA vaccines are an attractive approach to eliciting antigen-specific immunity. Intracellular targeting of tumor antigens through its linkage to immunostimulatory molecules such as calreticulin (CRT) can improve antigen processing and presentation through the MHC class I pathway and increase cytotoxic CD8+ T cell production. However, even with these enhancements, the efficacy of such immunotherapeutic strategies is dependent on the identification of an effective route and method of DNA administration. Electroporation and gene gun-mediated particle delivery are leading methods of DNA vaccine delivery that can generate protective and therapeutic levels of immune responses in experimental models. In this study, we perform a head-to-head comparison of three methods of vaccination--conventional intramuscular injection, electroporation-mediated intramuscular delivery, and epidermal gene gun-mediated particle delivery--in the ability to generate antigen-specific cytotoxic CD8+ T cell responses as well as anti-tumor immune responses against an HPV-16 E7 expressing tumor cell line using the pNGVL4a-CRT/E7(detox) DNA vaccine. Vaccination via electroporation generated the highest number of E7-specific cytotoxic CD8+ T cells, which correlated to improved outcomes in the treatment of growing tumors. In addition, we demonstrate that electroporation results in significantly higher levels of circulating protein compared to gene gun or intramuscular vaccination, which likely enhances calreticulins role as a local tumor anti-angiogenesis agent. We conclude that electroporation is a promising method for delivery of HPV DNA vaccines and should be considered for DNA vaccine delivery in human clinical trials.
Bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) is a pathogen of major importance in cattle, so there is a need for new effective vaccines. DNA vaccines induce balanced immune responses and are relatively inexpensive and thus promising for both human and veterinary applications. In this study, newborn calves with maternal antibodies were vaccinated intramuscularly (i.m.) with a BVDV E2 DNA vaccine with the TriGrid Delivery System for i.m. delivery (TDS-IM). Two doses of this vaccine spaced 6 or 12 weeks apart were sufficient to induce significant virus-neutralizing antibody titers, numbers of activated T cells, and reduction in viral shedding and clinical presentations after BVDV-2 challenge. In contrast to the placebo-treated animals, the vaccinated calves did not lose any weight, which is an excellent indicator of the well-being of an animal and has a significant economic impact. Furthermore, the interval between the two vaccinations did not influence the magnitude of the immune responses or degree of clinical protection, and a third immunization was not necessary or beneficial. Since electroporation may enhance not only the magnitude but also the duration of immunity after DNA immunization, the interval between vaccination and challenge was extended in a second trial, which showed that two doses of this E2 DNA vaccine again significantly reduced clinical disease against BVDV for several months. These results are promising and support this technology for use against infectious diseases in cattle and large species, including humans, in general.
Although therapeutic HPV vaccines are able to elicit systemic HPV-specific immunity, clinical responses have not always correlated with levels of vaccine-induced CD8(+) T cells in human clinical trials. This observed discrepancy may be attributable to an immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment in which the CD8(+) T cells are recruited. Regulatory T cells (Tregs) are cells that can dampen cytotoxic CD8(+) T-cell function. Cyclophosphamide (CTX) is a systemic chemotherapeutic agent, which can eradicate immune cells, including inhibitory Tregs. The optimal dose and schedule of CTX administration in combination with immunotherapy to eliminate the Treg population without adversely affecting vaccine-induced T-cell responses is unknown. Therefore, we investigated various dosing and administration schedules of CTX in combination with a therapeutic HPV vaccine in a preclinical tumor model. HPV tumor-bearing mice received either a single preconditioning dose or a daily dose of CTX in combination with the pNGVL4a-CRT/E7(detox) DNA vaccine. Both single and daily dosing of CTX in combination with vaccine had a synergistic antitumor effect as compared to monotherapy alone. The potent antitumor responses were attributed to the reduction in Treg frequency and increased infiltration of HPV16 E7-specific CD8(+) T cells, which led to higher ratios of CD8(+)/Treg and CD8(+)/CD11b(+)Gr-1(+) myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs). There was an observed trend toward decreased vaccine-induced CD8(+) T-cell frequency with daily dosing of CTX. We recommend a single, preconditioning dose of CTX prior to vaccination due to its efficacy, ease of administration, and reduced cumulative adverse effect on vaccine-induced T cells.
We evaluated the immunogenicity and protective efficacy of DNA vaccines expressing the codon-optimized envelope glycoprotein genes of Zaire ebolavirus, Sudan ebolavirus, and Marburg marburgvirus (Musoke and Ravn). Intramuscular or intradermal delivery of the vaccines in BALB/c mice was performed using the TriGrid™ electroporation device. Mice that received DNA vaccines against the individual viruses developed robust glycoprotein-specific antibody titers as determined by ELISA and survived lethal viral challenge with no display of clinical signs of infection. Survival curve analysis revealed there was a statistically significant increase in survival compared to the control groups for both the Ebola and Ravn virus challenges. These data suggest that further analysis of the immune responses generated in the mice and additional protection studies in nonhuman primates are warranted.
This preclinical study investigated the therapeutic efficacy of electroporation (EP)-based delivery of plasmid DNA (pDNA) encoding viral proteins (envelope, core) and IFN-? in the duck model of chronic hepatitis B virus (DHBV) infection. Importantly, only DNA EP-therapy resulted in a significant decrease in mean viremia titers and in intrahepatic covalently closed circular DNA (cccDNA) levels in chronic DHBV-carrier animals, compared with standard needle pDNA injection (SI). In addition, DNA EP-therapy stimulated in all virus-carriers a humoral response to DHBV preS protein, recognizing a broader range of major antigenic regions, including neutralizing epitopes, compared with SI. DNA EP-therapy led also to significant higher intrahepatic IFN-? RNA levels in DHBV-carriers compared to other groups, in the absence of adverse effects. We provide the first evidence on DNA EP-therapy benefit in terms of hepadnaviral infection clearance and break of immune tolerance in virus-carriers, supporting its clinical application for chronic hepatitis B.
Administration of a clade C/B candidate HIV-1 DNA vaccine, ADVAX, by in vivo electroporation (EP) was safe and more immunogenic than intramuscular administration without EP. The breadth and specificity of T-cell responses to full-length Env were mapped. Responses to multiple Env regions were induced, with most focusing on V3/C4 and V2 regions, including the ?4?7 integrin-binding domain. The breadth of responses induced by this DNA vaccine regimen was comparable to that of viral-vectored vaccine regimens.
Electroporation of DNA vaccines represents a platform technology well positioned for the development of multivalent biodefense vaccines. To evaluate this hypothesis, three vaccine constructs were produced using codon-optimized genes encoding Bacillus anthracis Protective Antigen (PA), and the Yersinia pestis genes LcrV and F1, cloned into pVAX1. A/J mice were immunized on a prime-boost schedule with these constructs using the electroporation-based TriGrid Delivery System. Immunization with the individual pDNA vaccines elicited higher levels of antigen-specific IgG than when used in combination. DNA vaccine effectiveness was proven, the pVAX-PA titers were toxin neutralizing and fully protective against a lethal B. anthracis spore challenge when administered alone or co-formulated with the plague pDNA vaccines. LcrV and F1 pVAX vaccines against plague were synergistic, resulting in 100% survival, but less protective individually and when co-formulated with pVAX-PA. These DNA vaccine responses were Th1/Th2 balanced with high levels of IFN-? and IL-4 in splenocyte recall assays, contrary to complimentary protein Alum vaccinations displaying a Th2 bias with increased IL-4 and low levels of IFN-?. These results demonstrate the feasibility of electroporation to deliver and maintain the overall efficacy of an anthrax-plague DNA vaccine cocktail whose individual components have qualitative immunological differences when combined.
Induction of a humoral response against amyloid-? peptide may be beneficial for Alzheimers disease (AD) patients and may alleviate the onset and progression of AD. DNA-based vaccination provides a unique alternative method of immunization for treatment and prevention of AD. Currently, the two major delivery methods used for enhancing DNA uptake and immune responses to DNA vaccines in humans are electroporation (EP) and gene gun (GG).
We explored in the duck hepatitis B virus (DHBV) model the impact of electroporation (EP)-mediated DNA vaccine delivery on the neutralizing humoral response to viral preS/S large envelope protein. EP enhanced the kinetics and magnitude of anti-preS response compared to the standard needle DNA injection (SI). Importantly, EP dramatically enhanced the neutralizing potency of the humoral response, since antibodies induced by low DNA dose (10 ?g) were able to highly neutralize DHBV and to recognize ten antigenic regions, including four neutralization epitopes. Whereas, SI-induced antibodies by the same low DNA dose were not neutralizing and the epitope pattern was extremely narrow, since it was limited to only one epitope. Thus, EP-based delivery was able to improve the dose efficiency of DNA vaccine and to maintain a highly neutralizing, multi-specific B-cell response, suggesting that it may be an effective approach for chronic hepatitis B therapy at clinically feasible DNA dose.
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