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Antiviral Res. 2013 Apr;98(1):61-5. doi: 10.1016/j.antiviral.2013.02.005. Epub 2013 Feb 18.

BacMam immunization partially protects pigs against sublethal challenge with African swine fever virus.

Author information

1
Centre de Recerca en Sanitat Animal-CReSA, UAB-IRTA, Campus de la UAB, 08193 Bellaterra, Barcelona, Spain.

Abstract

Lack of vaccines and efficient control measures complicate the control and eradication of African swine fever (ASF). Limitations of conventional inactivated and attenuated virus-based vaccines against African swine fever virus (ASFV) highlight the need to use new technologies to develop efficient and safe vaccines against this virus. With this aim in mind, in this study we have constructed BacMam-sHAPQ, a baculovirus based vector for gene transfer into mammalian cells, expressing a fusion protein comprising three in tandem ASFV antigens: p54, p30 and the extracellular domain of the viral hemagglutinin (secretory hemagglutinin, sHA), under the control of the human cytomegalovirus immediate early promoter (CMVie). Confirming its correct in vitro expression, BacMam-sHAPQ induced specific T-cell responses directly after in vivo immunization. Conversely, no specific antibody responses were detectable prior to ASFV challenge. The protective potential of this recombinant vaccine candidate was tested by a homologous sublethal challenge with ASFV following immunization. Four out of six immunized pigs remained viremia-free after ASFV infection, while the other two pigs showed similar viremic titres to control animals. The protection afforded correlated with the presence of a large number of virus-specific IFNγ-secreting T-cells in blood at 17 days post-infection. In contrast, the specific antibody levels observed after ASFV challenge in sera from BacMam-sHAPQ immunized pigs were indistinguishable from those found in control pigs. These results highlight the importance of the cellular responses in protection against ASFV and point towards BacMam vectors as potential tools for future vaccine development.

PMID:
23428670
DOI:
10.1016/j.antiviral.2013.02.005
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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