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Vaccines (Basel) ; 9(11)2021 Nov 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1488809


A recently reported parallel preclinical study between a severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) mRNA vaccine and an inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine adjuvanted with alum showed pulmonary immunopathology typical of eosinophil accumulation in a mouse pneumonia model for the latter, which implied a potential role of cellular immunity in the difference in the protection rate between these two forms of vaccines. For those who have been vaccinated with alum-adjuvanted subunit or inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, whether the Th2 responses that have been established and the absence of induced cellular immunity could be changed is an open question. Using two heterologous boosts with Th1-oriented CpG ODN-adjuvanted S1-based SARS-CoV-2 subunit vaccines for mice that were primed with two doses of Th2-oriented alum-adjuvanted S1-based SARS-CoV-2 subunit vaccines, we demonstrated that established Th2 orientation could not be reversed to Th1 orientation and that no cellular immunity was induced, which should have been induced if the boosting vaccines were used as the prime vaccines. These results remind us that if widely administered alum-adjuvanted SARS-CoV-2 vaccines cannot overcome the challenge of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and that if cellular immunity is important for the efficacy of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines in the future, the choice of more powerful heterologous boosting vaccine forms that can induce cellular immunity should be considered very carefully before application.

J Med Virol ; 93(2): 892-898, 2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1206802


Since its emergence in December 2019, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has developed into a global pandemic within a matter of months. While subunit vaccines are one of the prominent options for combating coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the immunogenicity of spike protein-based antigens remains unknown. When immunized in mice, the S1 domain induced much higher IgG and IgA antibody levels than the receptor-binding domain (RBD) and more efficiently neutralized SARS-CoV-2 when adjuvanted with alum. It is inferred that a large proportion of these neutralization epitopes are located in the S1 domain but outside the RBD and that some of these are spatial epitopes. This finding indicates that expression systems with posttranslational modification abilities are important to maintain the natural configurations of recombinant spike protein antigens and are critical for effective COVID-19 vaccines. Further, adjuvants prone to a Th1 response should be considered for S1-based subunit COVID-19 vaccines to reduce the potential risk of antibody-dependent enhancement of infection.

Antibodies, Neutralizing/biosynthesis , Antibodies, Viral/biosynthesis , Antigens, Viral/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/biosynthesis , COVID-19/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Adjuvants, Immunologic/administration & dosage , Alum Compounds/administration & dosage , Animals , Antigens, Viral/genetics , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , Female , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Immunity, Humoral/drug effects , Immunization , Immunization Schedule , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Immunoglobulin A/biosynthesis , Immunoglobulin G/biosynthesis , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Protein Domains/immunology , Recombinant Proteins/administration & dosage , Recombinant Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Proteins/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Th1 Cells/drug effects , Th1 Cells/immunology , Th2 Cells/drug effects , Th2 Cells/immunology