Combined influenza-AIDS vaccines
Influenza and HIV are both serious global pathogens. Can a single vaccine be designed to cover both viruses?! Recent advances in reverse genetic techniques allow insertion of foreign antigens into live influenza viruses. Further, live attenuated influenza vaccines are now highly effective vaccines. Together with collaborators Lori Brown, Brad Gilbertson, John Stambas, Steve Turner and Nobel laureate Peter Doherty we are designing recombinant influenza vaccines with inserted SIV antigens to test as a combined Influenza-AIDS vaccine. An advantage of this strategy is that as a mucosal virus, there is a strong likelihood that immunity at mucosal surfaces, where HIV is first encountered, can be induced with this approach. Exciting preliminary data suggest this approach has great potential to induce T cell immunity although escape from single CTL epitopes is a significant barrier. We are now generating Flu-HIV vaccines that express an expanded range of HIV antigens.
Figure 1: FACS plots of SIV KP9-specific CD8+ T cells in blood before and 7 days after Flu-SIV infection
Dr Rob De Rose, Mr Hyon-Xhi-Tan
NHMRC Project Grant #628331, Gates Grand Challenges Exploration Grant #OPP1008294.
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