Enhancing protective efficacy of poultry vaccines through targeted delivery of antigens to antigen-presenting cells

Avian viral diseases including avian influenza, Marek’s disease and Newcastle disease are detrimental to economies around the world that depend on the poultry trade. A significant zoonotic threat is also posed by avian influenza viruses. Vaccination is an important and widely used method for controlling these poultry diseases. However, the current vaccines do not provide full protection or sterile immunity. Hence, there is a need to develop improved vaccines. The major aim of developing improved vaccines is to induce strong and specific humoral and cellular immunity in vaccinated animals. One strategy used to enhance the immunogenicity of vaccines is the selective delivery of protective antigens to antigen-presenting cells (APCs) including dendritic cells, macrophages and B cells. APCs have a central role in the initiation and maintenance of immune responses through their ability to capture, process and present antigens to T and B cells. Vaccine technology that selectively targets APCs has been achieved by coupling antigens to monoclonal antibodies or ligands that are targeted by APCs. The aim of this review is to discuss existing strategies of selective delivery of antigens to APCs for effective vaccine development in poultry.

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