Mucosal antibody responses to vaccines targeting SIV protease cleavage sites or full-length Gag and Env proteins in Mauritian cynomolgus macaques
MetadataShow full item record
HIV mutates rapidly and infects CD4+ T cells, especially when they are activated. A vaccine targeting conserved, essential viral elements while limiting CD4+ T cell activation could be effective. Learning from natural immunity observed in a group of highly HIV-1 exposed seronegative Kenyan female sex workers, we are testing a novel candidate HIV vaccine targeting the 12 viral protease cleavage sites (PCSs) (the PCS vaccine), in comparison with a vaccine targeting full-length Gag and Env (the Gag/Env vaccine) in a Mauritian cynomolgus macaque/SIV model. In this study, we evaluated these vaccines for induction of mucosal antibodies to SIV immunogens at the female genital tract. Bio-Plex and Western blot analyses of cervicovaginal lavage samples showed that both the PCS and Gag/Env vaccines can elicit mucosal IgG antibody responses to SIV immunogens. A significantly higher increase of anti-PCS antibodies was induced by the PCS vaccine than by the Gag/Env vaccine (p<0.0001). The effect of the mucosal antibody responses in protection from repeated low dose pathogenic SIVmac251 challenges is being evaluated.