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J Infect Dis. 1997 Aug;176 Suppl 1:S45-9.

Development of novel influenza virus vaccines and vectors.

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Department of Microbiology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, New York 10029, USA.


Approaches to improve the efficacy of the current (killed) influenza virus vaccines include the generation of cold-adapted and genetically engineered influenza viruses containing specific attenuating mutations. It is hoped that these genetically altered viruses, in which the hemagglutinin and neuraminidase genes from circulating strains have been incorporated by reassortment, can be used as safe live influenza virus vaccines to induce a long-lasting protective immune response in humans. In addition, genetically engineered influenza viruses may provide a means for expressing foreign antigens. Immunization of mice with recombinant influenza and vaccinia viruses expressing specific antigens of Plasmodium yoelii resulted in a dramatic protective immune response against malaria in this model. Mice immunized with recombinant influenza viruses expressing human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) epitopes generated long-lasting HIV-specific serum antibodies and secretory IgA in the secretory nasal, vaginal, and intestinal mucosa. These results suggest that genetically engineered influenza viruses may be developed for use as live virus vaccines against influenza as well as other diseases.

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