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J Invest Dermatol. 2013 Aug;133(8):1933-41. doi: 10.1038/jid.2013.79. Epub 2013 Feb 20.

Topical vaccination with functionalized particles targeting dendritic cells.

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Department of Dermatology, Venerology and Allergology, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany.


Needle-free vaccination, for reasons of safety, economy, and convenience, is a central goal in vaccine development, but it also needs to meet the immunological requirements for efficient induction of prophylactic and therapeutic immune responses. Combining the principles of noninvasive delivery to dendritic cells (DCs) through skin and the immunological principles of cell-mediated immunity, we developed microparticle-based topical vaccines. We show here that the microparticles are efficient carriers for coordinated delivery of the essential vaccine constituents to DCs for cross-presentation of the antigens and stimulation of T-cell responses. When applied to the skin, the microparticles penetrate into hair follicles and target the resident DCs, the immunologically most potent cells and site for induction of efficient immune responses. The microparticle vaccine principle can be applied to different antigen formats such as peptides and proteins, or nucleic acids coding for the antigens.

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