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Hum Vaccin Immunother. 2014;10(8):2188-98. doi: 10.4161/hv.29574.

Multivalent TB vaccines targeting the esx gene family generate potent and broad cell-mediated immune responses superior to BCG.

Author information

1
a Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine; University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine; Philadelphia, PA USA.

Abstract

Development of a broad-spectrum synthetic vaccine against TB would represent an important advance to the limited vaccine armamentarium against TB. It is believed that the esx family of TB antigens may represent important vaccine candidates. However, only 4 esx antigens have been studied as potential vaccine antigens. The challenge remains to develop a vaccine that simultaneously targets all 23 members of the esx family to induce enhanced broad-spectrum cell-mediated immunity. We sought to investigate if broader cellular immune responses could be induced using a multivalent DNA vaccine representing the esx family protein members delivered via electroporation. In this study, 15 designed esx antigens were created to cross target all members of the esx family. They were distributed into groups of 3 self-processing antigens each, resulting in 5 trivalent highly optimized DNA plasmids. Vaccination with all 5 constructs elicited robust antigen-specific IFN-γ responses to all encoded esx antigens and induced multifunctional CD4 Th1 and CD8 T cell responses. Importantly, we show that when all constructs are combined into a cocktail, the RSQ-15 vaccine, elicited substantial broad Ag-specific T cell responses to all esx antigens as compared with vaccination with BCG. Moreover, these vaccine-induced responses were highly cross-reactive with BCG encoded esx family members and were highly immune effective in a BCG DNA prime-boost format. Furthermore, we demonstrate the vaccine potential and immunopotent profile of several novel esx antigens never previously studied. These data highlight the likely importance of these novel immunogens for study as preventative or therapeutic synthetic TB vaccines in combination or as stand alone antigens.

KEYWORDS:

BCG; DNA vaccines; TB vaccine; electroporation; esx family; prime-boost; tuberculosis

PMID:
25424922
PMCID:
PMC4896768
DOI:
10.4161/hv.29574
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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