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Vaccine. 2013 Feb 6;31(8):1163-70. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2012.12.063. Epub 2013 Jan 7.

Clinical trial to evaluate safety and immunogenicity of an oral inactivated enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli prototype vaccine containing CFA/I overexpressing bacteria and recombinantly produced LTB/CTB hybrid protein.

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Gothenburg University Vaccine Research Institute, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Gothenburg, 405 30 Gothenburg, Sweden.


We have developed a new oral vaccine against enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) diarrhea containing killed recombinant E. coli bacteria expressing increased levels of ETEC colonization factors (CFs) and a recombinant protein (LCTBA), i.e. a hybrid between the binding subunits of E. coli heat labile toxin (LTB) and cholera toxin (CTB). We describe a randomized, comparator controlled, double-blind phase I trial in 60 adult Swedish volunteers of a prototype of this vaccine. The safety and immunogenicity of the prototype vaccine, containing LCTBA and an E. coli strain overexpressing the colonization factor CFA/I, was compared to a previously developed oral ETEC vaccine, consisting of CTB and inactivated wild type ETEC bacteria expressing CFA/I (reference vaccine). Groups of volunteers were given two oral doses of either the prototype or the reference vaccine; the prototype vaccine was administered at the same or a fourfold higher dosage than the reference vaccine. The prototype vaccine was found to be safe and equally well-tolerated as the reference vaccine at either dosage tested. The prototype vaccine induced mucosal IgA (fecal secretory IgA and intestine-derived IgA antibody secreting cell) responses to both LTB and CFA/I, as well as serum IgA and IgG antibody responses to LTB. Immunization with LCTBA resulted in about twofold higher mucosal and systemic IgA responses against LTB than a comparable dose of CTB. The higher dose of the prototype vaccine induced significantly higher fecal and systemic IgA responses to LTB and fecal IgA responses to CFA/I than the reference vaccine. These results demonstrate that CF over-expression and inclusion of the LCTBA hybrid protein in an oral inactivated ETEC vaccine does not change the safety profile when compared to a previous generation of such a vaccine and that the prototype vaccine induces significant dose dependent mucosal immune responses against CFA/I and LTB.

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