Recombinant Liver Stage Antigen-1 (LSA-1) formulated with AS01 or AS02 is safe, elicits high titer antibody and induces IFN-gamma/IL-2 CD4+ T cells but does not protect against experimental Plasmodium falciparum infection.

Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Silver Spring, MD 20910, USA.
Vaccine (Impact Factor: 3.49). 10/2009; 28(31):5135-44. DOI: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2009.08.046
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Plasmodium falciparum Liver Stage Antigen 1 (LSA-1) is a pre-erythrocytic stage antigen. Our LSA-1 vaccine candidate is a recombinant protein with full-length C- and N-terminal flanking domains and two of the 17 amino acid repeats from the central repeat region termed "LSA-NRC." We describe the first Phase I/II study of this recombinant LSA-NRC protein formulated with either the AS01 or AS02 adjuvant system. We conducted an open-label Phase I/II study. Thirty-six healthy malaria-naïve adults received one of four formulations by intra-deltoid injection on a 0 and 1 month schedule; low dose (LD) LSA-NRC/AS01:10microg LSA-NRC/0.5ml AS01 (n=5), high dose (HD) LSA-NRC/AS01: 50microg LSA-NRC/0.5ml AS01 (n=13); LD LSA-NRC/AS02: 10microg LSA-NRC/0.5ml AS02 (n=5) and HD LSA-NRC/AS02: 50microg LSA-NRC/0.5ml AS02 (n=13). Two weeks post-second immunization, the high dose vaccinees and 6 non-immunized infectivity controls underwent experimental malaria sporozoite challenge. The vaccines showed a reassuring safety profile but were moderately reactogenic. There were no serious adverse events. All subjects seroconverted after the first immunization. Following the second immunization, LSA-1-specific CD4+ T cells producing two cytokines (IL-2 and IFN-gamma) were found by intra-cellular staining in all subjects in the LD LSA-NRC/AS01B group and in 3 of 5 subjects in the LD LSA-NRC/AS02 group. In contrast, the HD LSA-NRC/AS01 and HD LSA-NRC/AS02 group subjects had fewer LSA-1-specific CD4+ T cells, and minimal to no IFN-gamma responses. There was no increase in LSA-1-specific CD8+ T cells found in any group. Per protocol, 22 high dose vaccinees, but no low dose vaccinees, underwent P. falciparum homologous malaria challenge (3D7 clone). All vaccinees became parasitemic and there was no delay in their pre-patent period versus controls (p=0.95). LSA-NRC/AS01 and LSA-NRC/AS02 elicited antigen-specific antibody and CD4+ T cell responses, but elicited no protective immunity. Although the optimal antigen dose of LSA-NRC may not have been selected for the challenge portion of the protocol, further vaccine development based upon LSA-1 should not be excluded and should include alternative vaccine platforms able to elicit additional effector mechanisms such as CD8+ T cells.


Available from: Michele D Spring, May 15, 2015
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Plasmodium sporozoites and liver stages express antigens that are targeted to the MHC-Class I antigen-processing pathway. After the introduction of Plasmodium sporozoites by Anopheles mosquitoes, bone marrow-derived dendritic cells in skin-draining lymph nodes are the first cells to cross-present parasite antigens and elicit specific CD8(+) T cells. One of these antigens is the immunodominant circumsporozoite protein (CSP). The CD8(+) T cell-mediated protective immune response against CSP is dependent on the interleukin loop involving IL-4 receptor expression on CD8(+) cells and IL-4 secretion by CD4(+) T cell helpers. In a few days, these CD8(+) T cells re-circulate to secondary lymphoid organs and the liver. In the liver, the hepatic sinusoids are enriched with cells, such as dendritic, sinusoidal endothelial and Kupffer cells, that are able to cross-present MHC class I antigens to intrahepatic CD8(+) T cells. Specific CD8(+) T cells actively find infected hepatocytes and target intra-cellular parasites through mechanisms that are both interferon-γ-dependent and -independent. Immunity is mediated by CD8(+) T effector or effector-memory cells and, when present in high numbers, these cells can provide sterilizing immunity. Human vaccination trials with recombinant formulations or attenuated sporozoites have yet to achieve the high numbers of specific effector T cells that are required for sterilizing immunity. In spite of the limited number of specific CD8(+) T cells, attenuated sporozoites provided multiple times by the endovenous route provided a high degree of protective immunity. These observations highlight that CD8(+) T cells may be useful for improving antibody-mediated protective immunity to pre-erythrocytic stages of malaria parasites.
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In an attempt to improve the efficacy of the candidate malaria vaccine RTS,S/AS02, two studies were conducted in 1999 in healthy volunteers of RTS,S/AS02 in combination with recombinant Plasmodium falciparum thrombospondin-related anonymous protein (TRAP). In a Phase 1 safety and immunogenicity study, volunteers were randomized to receive TRAP/AS02 (N = 10), RTS,S/AS02 (N = 10), or RTS,S + TRAP/AS02 (N = 20) at 0, 1 and 6-months. In a Phase 2 challenge study, subjects were randomized to receive either RTS,S + TRAP/AS02 (N = 25) or TRAP/AS02 (N = 10) at 0 and 1-month, or to a challenge control group (N = 8). In both studies, the combination vaccine had an acceptable safety profile and was acceptably tolerated. Antigen-specific antibodies, lymphoproliferative responses, and IFN-γ production by ELISPOT assay elicited with the combination vaccine were qualitatively similar to those generated by the single component vaccines. However, post-dose 2 anti-CS antibodies in the RTS,S + TRAP/AS02 vaccine recipients were lower than in the RTS,S/AS02 vaccine recipients. After challenge, 10 of 11 RTS,S + TRAP/AS02 vaccinees, 5 of 5 TRAP/AS02 vaccinees, and 8 of 8 infectivity controls developed parasitemia, with median pre-patent periods of 13.0, 11.0, and 12.0 days, respectively. The absence of any prevention or delay of parasitemia by TRAP/AS02 suggests no apparent added value of TRAP/AS02 as a candidate vaccine. The absence of significant protection or delay of parasitemia in the 11 RTS,S + TRAP/AS02 vaccine recipients contrasts with previous 2 dose studies of RTS,S/AS02. The small sample size did not permit identifying statistically significant differences between the study arms. However, we speculate, within the constraints of the challenge study, that the presence of the TRAP antigen may have interfered with the vaccine efficacy previously observed with this regimen of RTS,S/AS02, and that any future TRAP-based vaccines should consider employing alternative vaccine platforms.
    Vaccine 11/2014; 32(49). DOI:10.1016/j.vaccine.2014.06.033 · 3.49 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Antibodies are capable of blocking infection of the liver by Plasmodium sporozoites. Accordingly the induction of anti-sporozoite antibodies is a major aim of various vaccine approaches to malaria. In recent years our knowledge of the specificity and quantities of antibodies required for protection has been greatly expanded by clinical trials of various whole sporozoite and subunit vaccines. Moreover, the development of humanized mouse models and transgenic parasites have also aided our ability to assess the specificity of antibodies and their ability to block infection. Nonetheless, considerable gaps remain in our knowledge - in particular in understanding what antigens are recognized by infection blocking antibodies and in knowing how we can induce robust, long-lived antibody responses. Maintaining high levels of circulating antibodies is likely to be of primary importance, as antibodies must block infection in the short time it takes for sporozoites to reach the liver from the skin. It is clear that a better understanding of the development of protective B cell-mediated immunity will aid the development and refinement of malaria vaccines.
    Frontiers in Microbiology 11/2014; 5:625. DOI:10.3389/fmicb.2014.00625 · 3.94 Impact Factor