Mucosal delivery of a vectored RSV vaccine is safe and elicits protective immunity in rodents and nonhuman primates
Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) is a leading cause of severe respiratory disease in infants and the elderly. No vaccine is presently available to address this major unmet medical need. We generated a new genetic vaccine based on chimpanzee Adenovirus (PanAd3-RSV) and Modified Vaccinia Ankara RSV (MVA-RSV) encoding the F, N, and M2-1 proteins of RSV, for the induction of neutralizing antibodies and broad cellular immunity. Because RSV infection is restricted to the respiratory tract, we compared intranasal (IN) and intramuscular (M) administration for safety, immunogenicity, and efficacy in different species. A single IN or IM vaccination completely protected BALB/c mice and cotton rats against RSV replication in the lungs. However, only IN administration could prevent infection in the upper respiratory tract. IM vaccination with MVA-RSV also protected cotton rats from lower respiratory tract infection in the absence of detectable neutralizing antibodies. Heterologous prime boost with PanAd3-RSV and MVA-RSV elicited high neutralizing antibody titers and broad T-cell responses in nonhuman primates. In addition, animals primed in the nose developed mucosal IgA against the F protein. In conclusion, we have shown that our vectored RSV vaccine induces potent cellular and humoral responses in a primate model, providing strong support for clinical testing.