Increased immunogenicity of HIV envelope subunit complexed with alpha2-macroglobulin when combined with monophosphoryl lipid A and GM-CSF.
Critical to the success of HIV-1 subunit vaccines is the development of strategies to augment vaccine immunogenicity. Successful adjuvants must not only improve immunogenicity above current adjuvant levels, but must also decrease the dose of immunogen required for optimal immunogenicity. We have evaluated activated alpha2-macroglobulin (alpha2M*) and a squalene-based stable emulsion containing monophosphoryl lipid A (MPL-SE) with granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF) as adjuvants to enhance the immunogencity of candidate HIV immunogens. Balb/c mice were subcutaneously immunized on days 0, 14 and 28 with 100-0.1 microg of HIV-1 envelope gp120 C4-V3 immunogens from either HIV IIIB (C4-V3(IIIB)) or SHIV 89.6P (C4-V3(89.6P)). Immunogens were tested covalently coupled to alpha2M*, formulated with MPL-SE/GM-CSF, or as a combination of both. Using CFA/IFA, only 50 and 100 microg, but not lower doses of C4-V3(IIIB) peptides, induced antibody responses. In contrast, peak antibody responses were detected in mice immunized with 10 microg of C4-V3 peptide coupled to alpha2M* (alpha2M*-peptide). Similar to CFA/IFA, MPL-SE/GM-CSF induced optimal antibody responses at 50 and 100 microg of C4-V3 immunogen. However, the combination of MPL-SE/GM-CSF with alpha2M*-C4-V3 peptide decreased the dose of C4-V3 required for optimal response to 5 microg for C4-V3(IIIB), and to 0.1 microg for C4-V3(89.6P). Taken together, HIV envelope gp120 C4-V3 peptides covalently complexed with alpha2M* and formulated with MPL-SE/GM-CSF resulted in a subunit HIV immunogen capable of inducing anti-HIV envelope antibody responses at doses up to 100-fold less than those needed with CFA/IFA or MPL-SE/GM-CSF alone.
Liao, HX; Cianciolo, GJ; Staats, HF; Scearce, RM; Lapple, DM; Stauffer, SH; Thomasch, JR; Pizzo, SV; Montefiori, DC; Hagen, M; Eldridge, J; Haynes, BF
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