Boosting with Subtype C CN54rgp140 Protein Adjuvanted with Glucopyranosyl Lipid Adjuvant after Priming with HIV-DNA and HIV-MVA Is Safe and Enhances Immune Responses: A Phase I Trial.
BACKGROUND: A vaccine against HIV is widely considered the most effective and sustainable way of reducing new infections. We evaluated the safety and impact of boosting with subtype C CN54rgp140 envelope protein adjuvanted in glucopyranosyl lipid adjuvant (GLA-AF) in Tanzanian volunteers previously given three immunizations with HIV-DNA followed by two immunizations with recombinant modified vaccinia virus Ankara (HIV-MVA). METHODS: Forty volunteers (35 vaccinees and five placebo recipients) were given two CN54rgp140/GLA-AF immunizations 30-71 weeks after the last HIV-MVA vaccination. These immunizations were delivered intramuscularly four weeks apart. RESULTS: The vaccine was safe and well tolerated except for one episode of asymptomatic hypoglycaemia that was classified as severe adverse event. Two weeks after the second HIV-MVA vaccination 34 (97%) of the 35 previously vaccinated developed Env-specific binding antibodies, and 79% and 84% displayed IFN-γ ELISpot responses to Gag and Env, respectively. Binding antibodies to subtype C Env (included in HIV-DNA and protein boost), subtype B Env (included only in HIV-DNA) and CRF01_AE Env (included only in HIV-MVA) were significantly boosted by the CN54rgp140/GLA-AF immunizations. Functional antibodies detected using an infectious molecular clone virus/peripheral blood mononuclear cell neutralization assay, a pseudovirus/TZM-bl neutralization assay or by assays for antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) were not significantly boosted. In contrast, T-cell proliferative responses to subtype B MN antigen and IFN-γ ELISpot responses to Env peptides were significantly enhanced. Four volunteers not primed with HIV-DNA and HIV-MVA before the CN54rgp140/GLA-AF immunizations mounted an antibody response, while cell-mediated responses were rare. After the two Env subtype C protein immunizations, a trend towards higher median subtype C Env binding antibody titers was found in vaccinees who had received HIV-DNA and HIV-MVA prior to the two Env protein immunizations as compared to unprimed vaccinees (p = 0.07). CONCLUSION: We report excellent tolerability, enhanced binding antibody responses and Env-specific cell-mediated immune responses but no ADCC antibody increase after two immunizations with a subtype C rgp140 protein adjuvanted in GLA-AF in healthy volunteers previously immunized with HIV-DNA and HIV-MVA. TRIAL REGISTRATION: International Clinical Trials Registry PACTR2010050002122368.
Joachim, A; Bauer, A; Joseph, S; Geldmacher, C; Munseri, PJ; Aboud, S; Missanga, M; Mann, P; Wahren, B; Ferrari, G; Polonis, VR; Robb, ML; Weber, J; Tatoud, R; Maboko, L; Hoelscher, M; Lyamuya, EF; Biberfeld, G; Sandström, E; Kroidl, A; Bakari, M; Nilsson, C; McCormack, S
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