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Vaccine. 2013 Sep 13;31(40):4322-9. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2013.07.022. Epub 2013 Jul 20.

TLR2-targeted secreted proteins from Mycobacterium tuberculosis are protective as powdered pulmonary vaccines.

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Tuberculosis Research Program, Centenary Institute, Locked Bag No 6, Newtown, NSW 2042, Australia.


Despite considerable research efforts towards effective treatments, tuberculosis (TB) remains a staggering burden on global health. Suitably formulated sub-unit vaccines offer potential as safe and effective generators of protective immunity. The Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens, cutinase-like proteins (Culp) 1 and 6 and MPT83, were conjugated directly to the novel adjuvant Lipokel (Lipotek Pty Ltd), a TLR2 ligand that delivers antigen to immune cells in a self-adjuvanting context. Protein-Lipokel complexes were formulated as dry powders for pulmonary delivery directly to the lungs of mice by intra-tracheal insufflation, leading to recruitment of neutrophils and antigen presenting cell populations to the lungs at 72 h, that persisted at 7 days post immunisation. Significant increases in the frequency of activated dendritic cells were observed in the mediastinal lymph node (MLN) at 1 and 4 weeks after homologous boosting with protein-Lipokel vaccine. This was associated with the increased recruitment of effector CD4(+) and CD8(+) T-lymphocytes to the MLN and systemic antigen-specific, IFN-γ producing T-lymphocyte and IgG responses. Notably, pulmonary immunisation with either Culp1-6-Lipokel or MPT83-Lipokel powder vaccines generated protective responses in the lungs against aerosol M. tuberculosis challenge. The successful combination of TLR2-targeting and dry powder vaccine formulation, together with important practical benefits, offers potential for pulmonary vaccination against M. tuberculosis.


Cutinase-like protein1-6; Lipokel; MPT83; Powdered pulmonary vaccine; TLR-2; Tuberculosis

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