Efficacy of an AS03 A-adjuvanted split H5N1 influenza vaccine against an antigenically distinct low pathogenic H5N1 virus in pigs
AuthorDe Vleeschauwer, A. R.; Baras, B.; Kyriakis, C. S.; Jacob, V.; Planty, C.; Giannini, S. L.; Mossman, S.; Van Reeth, K.
We used the pig model of influenza to examine the efficacy of an AS03 A-adjuvanted split H5N1 (A/Indonesia/05/2005) vaccine against challenge with a low pathogenic (LP) H5N1 avian influenza (AI) virus (duck/Minnesota/1525/1981) with only 85% amino acid homology in its HA1. Influenza seronegative pigs were vaccinated twice intramuscularly with adjuvanted vaccine at 3 antigen doses, unadjuvanted vaccine or placebo. All pigs were challenged 4 weeks after the second vaccination and euthanized 2 days later. After 2 vaccinations, all pigs in the adjuvanted vaccine groups had high hemagglutination inhibiting (HI) antibody titers to the vaccine strain (160-640), and lower antibody titers to the A/Vietnam/1194/04 H5N1 strain and to 2 LP H5 viruses with 90-91% amino acid homology to the vaccine strain (20-160). Eight out of 12 pigs had HI titers (10-20) to the challenge virus immediately before challenge. Neuraminidase inhibiting antibodies to the challenge virus were detected in most pigs (7/12) and virus neutralizing antibodies in all pigs. There was no antigen-dose dependent effect on the antibody response among the pigs immunized with adjuvanted H5N1 vaccines. After challenge, these pigs showed a complete clinical protection, reduced lung lesions and a significant protection against virus replication in the respiratory tract. Though the challenge virus showed only moderate replication efficiency in pigs, our study suggests that AS03 A-adjuvanted H5N1 vaccine may confer a broader protection than generally assumed. The pros and cons of the pig as an H5N1 challenge model are also discussed. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.
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