Virus-like particles that display Zika virus envelope protein domain III induce potent neutralizing immune responses in mice

Ming Yang, Huafang Lai, Haiyan Sun, Qiang Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Several Zika virus (ZIKV) vaccine candidates have recently been described which use inactivated whole virus, DNA or RNA that express the virus' Envelope (E) glycoprotein as the antigen. These were successful in stimulating production of virus-targeted antibodies that protected animals against ZIKV challenges, but their use potentially will predispose vaccinated individuals to infection by the related Dengue virus (DENV). We have devised a virus like particle (VLP) carrier based on the hepatitis B core antigen (HBcAg) that displays the ZIKV E protein domain III (zDIII), and shown that it can be produced quickly and easily purified in large quantities from Nicotiana benthamiana plants. HBcAg-zDIII VLPs are shown to be highly immunogenic, as two doses elicited potent humoral and cellular responses in mice that exceed the threshold correlated with protective immunity against multiple strains of Zika virus. Notably, HBcAg-zDIII VLPs-elicited antibodies did not enhance the infection of DENV in Fc gamma receptor-expressing cells, offsetting the concern of ZIKV vaccines inducing cross-reactive antibodies and sensitizing people to subsequent DENV infection. Thus, our zDIII-based vaccine offers improved safety and lower cost production than other current alternatives, with equivalent effectiveness.

LanguageEnglish (US)
Article number7679
JournalScientific Reports
Volume7
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2017

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Viral Envelope Proteins
Virion
Hepatitis B Core Antigens
Dengue Virus
Vaccines
Antibodies
Viruses
IgG Receptors
DNA Viruses
RNA Viruses
Virus Diseases
Infection
Tobacco
Immunity
Glycoproteins
Protein Domains
Zika Virus
Safety
Antigens
Costs and Cost Analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Cite this

Virus-like particles that display Zika virus envelope protein domain III induce potent neutralizing immune responses in mice. / Yang, Ming; Lai, Huafang; Sun, Haiyan; Chen, Qiang.

In: Scientific Reports, Vol. 7, No. 1, 7679, 01.12.2017.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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