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PLoS One 2012;7(3):e32959

Formulation of a mmaA4 Gene Deletion Mutant of Mycobacterium bovis BCG in Cationic Liposomes Significantly Enhances Protection against Tuberculosis.

Derrick SC, Dao D, Yang A, Kolibab K, Jacobs WR, Morris SL


A new vaccination strategy is urgently needed for improved control of the global tuberculosis (TB) epidemic. Using a mouse aerosol Mycobacterium tuberculosis challenge model, we investigated the protective efficacy of a mmaA4 gene deletion mutant of Mycobacterium bovis BCG (DeltammaA4BCG) formulated in dimethyl dioctadecyl ammonium bromide (DDA) - D(+) trehalose 6,6 dibenenate (TDB) (DDA/TDB) adjuvant. In previous studies, deletion of the mmaA4 gene was shown to reduce the suppression of IL-12 production often seen after mycobacterial infections. While the non-adjuvanted DeltammaA4BCG strain did not protect mice substantially better than conventional BCG against a tuberculous challenge in four protection experiments, the protective responses induced by the DeltammaA4BCG vaccine formulated in DDA/TDB adjuvant was consistently increased relative to nonadjuvanted BCG controls. Furthermore, the DeltammaA4BCG-DDA/TDB vaccine induced significantly higher frequencies of multifunctional (MFT) CD4 T cells expressing both IFNgamma and TNFalpha (double positive) or IFNgamma, TNFalpha and IL-2 (triple positive) than CD4 T cells derived from mice vaccinated with BCG. These MFT cells were characterized by having higher IFNgamma and TNFalpha median fluorescence intensity (MFI) values than monofunctional CD4 T cells. Interestingly, both BCG/adjuvant and DeltammaA4BCG/adjuvant formulations induced significantly higher frequencies of CD4 T cells expressing TNFalpha and IL-2 than nonadjuvanted BCG or DeltammaA4BCG vaccines indicating that BCG/adjuvant mixtures may be more effective at inducing central memory T cells. Importantly, when either conventional BCG or the mutant were formulated in adjuvant and administered to SCID mice or immunocompromised mice depleted of IFNgamma, significantly lower vaccine-derived mycobacterial CFU were detected relative to immunodeficient mice injected with non-adjuvanted BCG. Overall, these data suggest that immunization with the DeltammaA4BCG/adjuvant formulation may be an effective, safe, and relatively inexpensive alternative to vaccination with conventional BCG.

Category: Journal Article
PubMed ID: #22442674 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0032959
PubMed Central ID: #PMC3307709
Includes FDA Authors from Scientific Area(s): Biologics
Entry Created: 2011-10-04 Entry Last Modified: 2013-05-15