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Influenza virus-like particle can accommodate multiple subtypes of hemagglutinin and protect from multiple influenza types and subtypes

Medigen, Inc., 4539 Metropolitan Court, Frederick, MD, USA.
Vaccine (Impact Factor: 3.49). 06/2011; 29(35):5911-8. DOI: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2011.06.068
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Despite existing vaccines and specific therapies, epidemics of seasonal influenza annually claim 200,000-500,000 lives worldwide. Pandemic influenza represents an even greater threat, with numerous potentially pandemic viruses circulating in nature. Development of multi-specific vaccines against multiple pandemic or seasonal strains is important for human health and the global economy. Here we report a novel virus-like particle (VLP) platform that contains three hemagglutinin (HA) subtypes. This recombinant vaccine design resulted in the expression of three HA subtypes co-localized within a VLP. Experimental triple-HA VLPs containing HA proteins derived from H5N1, H7N2, and H2N3 viruses were immunogenic and protected ferrets from challenge from all three potentially pandemic viruses. Similarly, VLPs containing HA subtypes derived from seasonal H1N1, H3N2, and type B influenza viruses protected ferrets from three seasonal influenza viruses. We conclude that this technology may represent a novel strategy for rapid development of trivalent seasonal and pandemic vaccines.

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    • "These studies are hampered by unavailability of reagents to H7 and H9 subtypes and will be accomplished when reference standards become available. Previous electron microscopy and SRID studies on triple-subtype VLPs containing seasonal influenza subtypes have shown that distinct HA subtypes are colocalizing within multi-subtype VLPs at approximately equivalent quantities (Pushko et al., 2011). In case if certain HA subtypes require higher quantities for optimal immunogenicity, their presence within multi-subtype VLPs can potentially be improved by genetic engineering. "
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