[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to investigate two different processes to produce a stable influenza subunit vaccine powder for pulmonary immunization i.e. spray drying (SD) and spray freeze drying (SFD). The formulations were analyzed by proteolytic assay, single radial immunodiffusion assay (SRID), cascade impactor analysis, and immunization studies in Balb/c mice. Proteolytic assay and SRID analysis showed that antigen integrity after SFD was best conserved when the formulation was buffered by Hepes buffer saline (HBS). Surprisingly, antigen integrity after SD was better conserved when the formulation was buffered by phosphate buffer saline (PBS) rather than by HBS. The dispersion from the dry powder inhaler, the Twincer, resulted in a fine particle fraction (aerodynamic particle size <5microm) of 37% and 23% for spray dried and spray freeze dried powders, respectively. Immunogenicity of both vaccine formulations (SFD/HBS and SD/PBS) was similar to conventional liquid formulation after i.m. immunization. In addition, compared to i.m. immunizations, the pulmonary immunization with the dry powders resulted in significantly higher IgG titers. Furthermore, both the formulations remained biochemically and physically stable for at least 3years of storage at 20 degrees C. Our results demonstrate that both optimized formulations are stable and have good inhalation characteristics.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The haemagglutinin (HA) content is an important specification of influenza vaccines. Recently, a reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC) method for quantification of HA in PER.C6 cell culture-based whole virus vaccines has been reported, having a high sensitivity, precision, broad range, and high sample throughput [Kapteyn JC, Drissi Saidi M, Dijkstra R, Kars C, Tjon CMS-K, Weverling GJ et al. Haemagglutinin quantification and identification of influenza A&B strains propagated in PER.C6 cells: a novel RP-HPLC method. Vaccine 2006;24:3137-44]. This RP-HPLC assay is based on measuring the peak area of HA1, the hydrophilic subunit of HA, which turned out to be proportional to the amount of HA analyzed. Here, we present data demonstrating that this RP-HPLC method is also highly suitable for HA quantification of active and BPL- or formaldehyde-inactivated egg-based and MDCK cell-based whole virus samples, including egg allantoic harvest, and in final (monovalent) subunit vaccines, including those for pandemic H5N1 strains and for virosomal vaccines. In addition, the RP-HPLC assay was demonstrated to be a very powerful tool in the early stages of seasonal influenza vaccine production, when homologous serial radial immunodiffusion (SRID) reagents are not yet available, enabling fast and reliable viral growth studies in eggs in order to select the best growing virus strains or reassortants for the production of the seasonal trivalent influenza vaccine. Because of its high sensitivity, the RP-HPLC assay has shown its enormous value in supporting small scale MDCK-based (H5N1) influenza virus production models. Finally, the observed differences between HA1 molecules from various HA subtypes in UV absorbance, FLD response, and in the actual retention times in RP-HPLC are discussed in relation to the primary structure of the HA1 molecules studied.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The major antigenic determinant of influenza A and B virus is haemagglutinin (HA). The HA content is an important specification of influenza vaccines. HA in vaccines has typically been quantified by single-radial-immunodiffusion (SRID). However, SRID is a laborious and low throughput assay. Moreover, sensitivity, accuracy, and precision, especially for non-purified (in-process) influenza virus is relatively low. We present a novel method for quantification of HA in influenza viral cultures as well as for the identification of HA from individual influenza strains in trivalent vaccines. The method is based on the separation of HA(1), the hydrophilic subunit of HA, from the more hydrophobic viral and matrix components by reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC). The HA(1) peak area is demonstrated to be proportional to the level of HA in non-purified, semi-purified and purified vaccine products of various epidemic and pandemic influenza A and B strains propagated in PER.C6((R)) cell cultures. The RP-HPLC assay selectivity allows for the simultaneous identification and quantification of HA(1) from influenza A and B strains in the yearly revised trivalent vaccines for epidemic outbreaks.