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Infect Immun. 2013 Nov;81(11):4071-80. doi: 10.1128/IAI.00786-13. Epub 2013 Aug 19.

Mucosal vaccination against tuberculosis using inert bioparticles.

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  • 1Infection and Immunity Research Centre, St. George's University of London, London, United Kingdom.


Needle-free, mucosal immunization is a highly desirable strategy for vaccination against many pathogens, especially those entering through the respiratory mucosa, such as Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Unfortunately, mucosal vaccination against tuberculosis (TB) is impeded by a lack of suitable adjuvants and/or delivery platforms that could induce a protective immune response in humans. Here, we report on a novel biotechnological approach for mucosal vaccination against TB that overcomes some of the current limitations. This is achieved by coating protective TB antigens onto the surface of inert bacterial spores, which are then delivered to the respiratory tract. Our data showed that mice immunized nasally with coated spores developed humoral and cellular immune responses and multifunctional T cells and, most importantly, presented significantly reduced bacterial loads in their lungs and spleens following pathogenic challenge. We conclude that this new vaccine delivery platform merits further development as a mucosal vaccine for TB and possibly also other respiratory pathogens.

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