Induction of human immunodeficiency virus type 1-specific T cells by a bluetongue virus tubule-vectored vaccine prime-recombinant modified virus Ankara boost regimen.
Larke N., Murphy A., Wirblich C., Teoh D., Estcourt MJ., McMichael AJ., Roy P., Hanke T.
In the absence of strategies for reliable induction of antibodies broadly neutralizing human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1), vaccine efforts have shifted toward the induction of cell-mediated immunity. Here we describe the construction and immunogenicity of novel T-cell vaccine NS1.HIVA, which delivers the HIV-1 clade A consensus-derived immunogen HIVA on the surface of tubular structures spontaneously formed by protein NS1 of bluetongue virus. We demonstrated that NS1 tubules can accommodate a protein as large as 527 amino acids without losing their self-assembly capability. When injected into BALB/c mice by several routes, chimeric NS1.HIVA tubules induced HIV-1-specific major histocompatibility complex class I-restricted T cells. These could be boosted by modified virus Ankara expressing the same immunogen and generate a memory capable of gamma interferon (IFN-gamma) production, proliferation, and lysis of sensitized target cells. Induced memory T cells readily produced IFN-gamma 230 days postimmunization, and upon a surrogate virus challenge, NS1.HIVA vaccine alone decreased the vaccinia virus vv.HIVA load in ovaries by 2 orders of magnitude 280 days after immunization. Thus, because of its T-cell immunogenicity and antigenic simplicity, the NS1 delivery system could serve as a priming agent for heterologous prime-boost vaccination regimens. Its usefulness in primates, including humans, remains to be determined.