A vaccine prepared from a non-pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza virus strain confers protective immunity against highly pathogenic avian influenza virus infection in cynomolgus macaques.Vaccine. 2008 Jan 24; 26(4):562-72.V
In order to prepare for the emergence of pandemic influenza viruses, we have established an influenza virus library that contains non-pathogenic influenza A virus strains with 135 combinations of 15 hemagglutinin and 9 neuraminidase subtypes. In this study, we developed a vaccine against H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) virus infection in humans using a virus strain selected from the library. We examined its immunogenic potency using cynomolgus macaques as a primate model. Virus antigen-specific antibodies were elicited by intranasal or subcutaneous administration of inactivated whole virus particle vaccines. After challenge with an H5N1 HPAI virus isolate obtained from a Vietnamese patient, the virus was detected only on next day following inoculation in the nasal and/or tracheal swabs of vaccinated macaques that were asymptomatic. On the other hand, the viruses were isolated from nasal and tracheal swabs from non-vaccinated macaques until day 5 and day 7 after inoculation of the H5N1 HPAI virus, respectively. Although six non-vaccinated macaques developed a high body temperature, and two of them lost their appetite after HPAI virus infection, they recovered by the end of the 12-day observation period and did not show the severe symptoms that have been reported in human H5N1 virus infection cases. This demonstrates that the vaccine prepared with the non-pathogenic H5N1 virus from our influenza virus library conferred protective immunity against H5N1 HPAI virus infection to macaques.