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© Charles DAUGUET, Institut Pasteur
HIV particles
Publication : Journal of virology

Enhanced Cross-Reactive and Polyfunctional Effector-Memory T Cell Responses by ICVAX-a Human PD1-Based Bivalent HIV-1 Gag-p41 Mosaic DNA Vaccine.

Scientific Fields
Diseases
Organisms
Applications
Technique

Published in Journal of virology - 13 Apr 2022

Chen SMY, Wong YC, Yim LY, Zhang H, Wang H, Lui GCY, Li X, Tang X, Cheng L, Du Y, Peng Q, Wang J, Kwok HY, Huang H, Lau TT, Chan DPC, Wong BCK, Liu L, Chakrabarti LA, Lee SS, Chen Z,

Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 35297660

Link to DOI – 10.1128/jvi.02161-21

J Virol 2022 04; 96(7): e0216121

Vaccine-induced protective T cell immunity is necessary for HIV-1 functional cure. We previously reported that rhesus PD1-Gag-based DNA vaccination sustained simian-human immunodeficiency virus (SHIV) suppression by inducing effector-memory CD8+ T cells. Here, we investigated a human PD1-Gag-based DNA vaccine, namely, ICVAX, for clinical translation. PD1-based dendritic cell targeting and mosaic antigenic designs were combined to generate the ICVAX by fusing the human soluble PD1 domain with a bivalent HIV-1 Gag-p41 mosaic antigen. The mosaic antigen was cross-reactive with patients infected with B, CRF07/08_BC, and CRF01_AE variants. In mice, ICVAX elicited stronger, broader, and more polyfunctional T cell responses than mosaic Gag-p41 alone, and suppressed EcoHIV infection more efficiently. In macaques, ICVAX elicited polyfunctional effector-memory T cell responses that targeted multiple nonoverlapping epitopes of the Gag-p41 antigen. Furthermore, ICVAX manufactured following good manufacturing practices proved potent immunogenicity in macaques after biannual homologous vaccination, warranting clinical evaluation of ICVAX as an immunotherapy against HIV-1. IMPORTANCE This study presents that ICVAX, a PD1-based DNA vaccine against HIV-1, could induce broad and polyfunctional T cell responses against different HIV-1 subtypes. ICVAX encodes a recombinant antigen consisting of the human soluble PD1 domain fused with two mosaic Gag-p41 antigens. The mosaic antigens cover more than 500 HIV-1 strains circulating in China including the subtypes B/B’, CRF01_AE, and CRF07/08_BC. In mice, ICVAX elicited stronger, broader, and more polyfunctional T cell responses, with better EcoHIV suppression than the nontargeting mosaic Gag-p41 DNA vaccine. Moreover, both lab-generated and GMP-grade ICVAX also elicited strong polyfunctional effector-memory T cell responses in rhesus macaques with good immunogenicity against multiple nonoverlapping epitopes of the Gag-p41 antigen. This study therefore highlights the great potential to translate the PD1-based DNA vaccine approach into clinical use, and opens up new avenues for alternative HIV-1 vaccine design for HIV-1 preventive and functional cure.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35297660