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PLoS One. 2015 Mar 20;10(3):e0119509. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0119509. eCollection 2015.

A novel respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) F subunit vaccine adjuvanted with GLA-SE elicits robust protective TH1-type humoral and cellular immunity in rodent models.

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Department of Research, MedImmune, Mountain View, California, United States of America.



Illness associated with Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) remains an unmet medical need in both full-term infants and older adults. The fusion glycoprotein (F) of RSV, which plays a key role in RSV infection and is a target of neutralizing antibodies, is an attractive vaccine target for inducing RSV-specific immunity.


BALB/c mice and cotton rats, two well-characterized rodent models of RSV infection, were used to evaluate the immunogenicity of intramuscularly administered RSV vaccine candidates consisting of purified soluble F (sF) protein formulated with TLR4 agonist glucopyranosyl lipid A (GLA), stable emulsion (SE), GLA-SE, or alum adjuvants. Protection from RSV challenge, serum RSV neutralizing responses, and anti-F IgG responses were induced by all of the tested adjuvanted RSV sF vaccine formulations. However, only RSV sF + GLA-SE induced robust F-specific TH1-biased humoral and cellular responses. In mice, these F-specific cellular responses include both CD4 and CD8 T cells, with F-specific polyfunctional CD8 T cells that traffic to the mouse lung following RSV challenge. This RSV sF + GLA-SE vaccine formulation can also induce robust RSV neutralizing titers and prime IFNγ-producing T cell responses in Sprague Dawley rats.


These studies indicate that a protein subunit vaccine consisting of RSV sF + GLA-SE can induce robust neutralizing antibody and T cell responses to RSV, enhancing viral clearance via a TH1 immune-mediated mechanism. This vaccine may benefit older populations at risk for RSV disease.

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