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PLoS One. 2013 Dec 11;8(12):e82899. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0082899. eCollection 2013.

Near-infrared laser adjuvant for influenza vaccine.

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Vaccine and Immunotherapy Center, Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Charlestown, Massachusetts, United States of America.
Department of Pathology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, United States of America.
Department of Applied Physics and Physico-Informatics, Faculty of Science and Technology, Keio Universtiy, Kohoku-ku, Yokohama-city, Kanagawa, Japan.
Department of Biochemistry, School of Medicine, Keio University, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo, Japan.
SkinCare Physicians of Chestnut Hill, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetss, United States of America.


Safe and effective immunologic adjuvants are often essential for vaccines. However, the choice of adjuvant for licensed vaccines is limited, especially for those that are administered intradermally. We show that non-tissue damaging, near-infrared (NIR) laser light given in short exposures to small areas of skin, without the use of additional chemical or biological agents, significantly increases immune responses to intradermal influenza vaccination without augmenting IgE. The NIR laser-adjuvanted vaccine confers increased protection in a murine influenza lethal challenge model as compared to unadjuvanted vaccine. We show that NIR laser treatment induces the expression of specific chemokines in the skin resulting in recruitment and activation of dendritic cells and is safe to use in both mice and humans. The NIR laser adjuvant technology provides a novel, safe, low-cost, simple-to-use, potentially broadly applicable and clinically feasible approach to enhancing vaccine efficacy as an alternative to chemical and biological adjuvants.

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