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Vaccine. 2013 Nov 19;31(48):5651-8. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2013.09.067. Epub 2013 Oct 8.

HIV-1 vaccine-specific responses induced by Listeria vector vaccines are maintained in mice subsequently infected with a model helminth parasite, Schistosoma mansoni.

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Department of Infectious Diseases, College of Veterinary Medicine and the Center for Tropical and Emerging Global Diseases, University of Georgia, 501 DW Brooks Drive, Athens, GA 30602-7387, USA. Electronic address:


In areas co-endemic for helminth parasites and HIV/AIDS, infants are often administered vaccines prior to infection with immune modulatory helminth parasites. Systemic Th2 biasing and immune suppression caused by helminth infection reduces cell-mediated responses to vaccines such as tetanus toxoid and BCG. Therefore, we asked if infection with helminthes post-vaccination, alters already established vaccine induced immune responses. In our model, mice are vaccinated against HIV-1 Gag using a Listeria vaccine vector (Lm-Gag) in a prime-boost manner, then infected with the human helminth parasite Schistosoma mansoni. This allows us to determine if established vaccine responses are maintained or altered after helminth infection. Our second objective asked if helminth infection post-vaccination alters the recipient's ability to respond to a second boost. Here we compared responses between uninfected mice, schistosome infected mice, and infected mice that were given an anthelminthic, which occurred coincident with the boost or four weeks prior, as well as comparing to un-boosted mice. We report that HIV-1 vaccine-specific responses generated by Listeria vector HIV-1 vaccines are maintained following subsequent chronic schistosome infection, providing further evidence that Listeria vector vaccines induce potent vaccine-specific responses that can withstand helminth infection. We also were able to demonstrate that administration of a second Listeria boost, which markedly enhanced the immune response, was minimally impacted by schistosome infection, or anthelminthic therapy. Surprisingly, we also observed enhanced antibody responses to HIV Gag in vaccinated mice subsequently infected with schistosomes.


Childhood vaccination; Chronic helminth infection; Endemic schistosomiasis; HIV Gag vaccine; Listeria monocytogenes; Lm; SEA; SWAP; Vaccine efficacy; soluble egg antigens from Schistosoma mansoni; soluble worm antigen preparation from Schistosoma mansoni

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