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Clin Vaccine Immunol. 2010 Nov;17(11):1687-94. doi: 10.1128/CVI.00311-10. Epub 2010 Sep 8.

The Th1 immune response to Plasmodium falciparum circumsporozoite protein is boosted by adenovirus vectors 35 and 26 with a homologous insert.

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Crucell Holland B.V., Archimedesweg 4-6, 2333 CN Leiden, Netherlands.

Erratum in

  • Clin Vaccine Immunol. 2011 Feb;18(2):353.


The most advanced malaria vaccine, RTS,S, is comprised of a portion of the Plasmodium falciparum circumsporozoite (CS) protein, fused to and admixed with the hepatitis B virus surface antigen, and an adjuvant [corrected].This vaccine confers short-term protection against malaria infection, with an efficacy of about 50%, and induces particularly B-cell and CD4(+) T-cell responses.In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that the Th1 immune response to CS protein,in particular the CD8(+) T-cell response, which is needed for strong and lasting malaria immunity, is boosted to sustainable levels by adenovirus vectors 35 and 26 with a homologous insert (Ad35.CS/Ad26.CS) [corrected]. In this study, we evaluated immune responses induced with vaccination regimens based on an adjuvant-containing, yeast-produced complete CS protein followed by two recombinant low-seroprevalence adenoviruses expressing P. falciparum CS antigen, Ad35.CS (subgroup B) and Ad26.CS (subgroup D). Our results show that (i) the yeast (Hansenula polymorpha)produced, adjuvanted full-length CS protein is highly potent in inducing high CS-specific humoral responses in mice but produces poor T-cell responses, (ii) the Ad35.CS vector boosts the gamma interferon-positive (IFN-γ(+)) CD8(+) T-cell response induced by the CS protein immunization and shifts the immune response toward the Th1 type, and (iii) a three-component heterologous vaccination comprised of a CS protein prime followed by boosts with Ad35.CS and Ad26.CS elicits an even more robust and sustainable IFN-γ(+) CD8(+) T-cell response than one- or two-component regimens. The Ad35.CS/Ad26.CS combination boosted particularly the IFN-γ(+) and tumor necrosis factor alpha-positive (TNF-α(+)) T cells, confirming the shift of the immune response from the Th2 type to the Th1 type. These results support the notion of first immunizations of infants with an adjuvanted CS protein vaccine, followed by a booster Ad35.CS/Ad26.CS vaccine at a later age, to induce lasting protection against malaria for which the Th1 response and immune memory is required.

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