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Vaccine. 2016 Feb 10;34(7):887-92. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2016.01.003. Epub 2016 Jan 13.

Enhanced humoral response to influenza vaccine in aged mice with a novel adjuvant, rOv-ASP-1.

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Department of Biology, Drexel University, 3245 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA; DMX Inc., West Chester, PA 19382, USA. Electronic address:
Department of Biology, Drexel University, 3245 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.
Lindsley F. Kimball Research Institute, New York Blood Center, New York, NY 10065, USA.
Department of Microbiology, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, 3610 Hamilton Walk, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.
Department of Biology, Drexel University, 3245 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA. Electronic address:


Immunization is the best way to prevent seasonal epidemics and pandemics of influenza. There are two kinds of influenza vaccines available in the United States: an inactivated vaccine (TIV) and an attenuated vaccine; however, only TIV is approved for immunization of the elderly population. While the aged population has the highest rate of influenza vaccination, the protective efficacy is low as evidenced by elderly individuals having the highest mortality associated with influenza. Recently, we reported that an adjuvant derived from the helminth parasite Onchocerca volvulus, named O. volvulus activation-associated secreted protein-1 (Ov-ASP-1), can significantly enhance the protective efficacy of an inactivated vaccine (TIV) in young adult mice. In the current study, we examined whether this recombinant Ov-ASP-1 (rOv-ASP-1) can enhance the efficacy of TIV in aged mice as well. While primary immunization with TIV alone produced only a low level of influenza-specific antibodies (total IgG, IgG1, and IgG2c) in aged mice, the antibody levels were significantly increased after immunization with TIV+rOv-ASP-1. More importantly, the level of the total IgG in aged mice administered TIV+rOv-ASP-1 was comparable to that of young adult mice immunized with TIV alone. Co-administration of rOv-ASP-1 induced a low level of cross-reactive antibody and enhanced the protective efficacy of TIV in aged mice, reflected by significantly increased survival after challenge with a heterologous influenza virus. rOv-ASP-1 was also superior to the conventional adjuvant alum in inducing specific IgG after TIV immunization in aged mice, and in conferring protection after challenge. These results demonstrate that rOv-ASP-1 may serve as a potential adjuvant for influenza vaccine to improve the efficacy of protection in the elderly.


Adjuvant; Aged; Influenza; Vaccine; Virus

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