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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1998 Mar 3;95(5):2481-5.

Immunization against rabies with plant-derived antigen.

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Biotechnology Foundation Laboratories at Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, PA 19107, USA.


We previously demonstrated that recombinant plant virus particles containing a chimeric peptide representing two rabies virus epitopes stimulate virus neutralizing antibody synthesis in immunized mice. We show here that mice immunized intraperitoneally or orally (by gastric intubation or by feeding on virus-infected spinach leaves) with engineered plant virus particles containing rabies antigen mount a local and systemic immune response. After the third dose of antigen, given intraperitoneally, 40% of the mice were protected against challenge infection with a lethal dose of rabies virus. Oral administration of the antigen stimulated serum IgG and IgA synthesis and ameliorated the clinical signs caused by intranasal infection with an attenuated rabies virus strain.

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