Experimental vaccine elicits robust response against both HIV and tuberculosis

May 22, 2012

Clinician researchers in China have developed a vaccine that acts simultaneously against HIV-1 and M. tuberculosis (Mtb). An estimated 14 million people worldwide are coinfected with the two pathogens. The research is published in the May 2012 issue of Clinical and Vaccine Immunology.

The vaccine is composed of from both pathogens. The team, led by Sidong Xiong of Fudan University, Shanghai, incorporated four Mtb epitopes (the part of an antigen that is recognized by the immune system) into a backbone composed of HIV-1 p24 protein, a protein that is known to produce against HIV-1. The logic of this construction: many epitopes are short , with poor unless they are introduced into a —which in this case was the p24 protein.

The vaccine induced cellular immune responses to both pathogens, in which immune system cells including macrophages search out and destroy pathogens; and humoral immune response against HIV-1, in which the immune system produces antibodies against the pathogen. The vaccine was tested in a mouse model. 

Tuberculosis is one of the leading causes of death worldwide; third, after hepatitis C and then HIV/AIDS among infectious diseases, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). An estimated 2 billion—28 percent of the world’s population—are infected with M. tuberculosis, but most of these infections are latent. However, HIV infection is the strongest risk factor for the progression of latent tuberculosis infection to active TB.  And TB is the direct cause of death in about one quarter of all deaths among people with HIV/AIDS, according to the WHO.

More information: X. Li, W. Xu, and S. Xiong, 2012. A novel tuberculosis DNA vaccine in an HIV-1 p24 protein backbone confers protection against Mycobacterium tuberculosis and simultaneously elicits robust humoral and cellular responses to HIV-1. Clin. Vac. Immunol. 19:723-730.

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Exposure to larger air particles linked to increased risk of asthma in children

December 15, 2017
Researchers at The Johns Hopkins University report statistical evidence that children exposed to airborne coarse particulate matter—a mix of dust, sand and non-exhaust tailpipe emissions, such as tire rubber—are more ...

Bioengineers imagine the future of vaccines and immunotherapy

December 14, 2017
In the not-too-distant future, nanoparticles delivered to a cancer patient's immune cells might teach the cells to destroy tumors. A flu vaccine might look and feel like applying a small, round Band-Aid to your skin.

Immune cells turn back time to achieve memory

December 13, 2017
Memory T cells earn their name by embodying the memory of the immune system - they help the body remember what infections or vaccines someone has been exposed to. But to become memory T cells, the cells go backwards in time, ...

Steroid study sheds light on long term side effects of medicines

December 13, 2017
Fresh insights into key hormones found in commonly prescribed medicines have been discovered, providing further understanding of the medicines' side effects.

The immune cells that help tumors instead of destroying them

December 12, 2017
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-associated deaths. One of the most promising ways to treat it is by immunotherapy, a strategy that turns the patient's immune system against the tumor. In the past twenty years, ...

Cancer gene plays key role in cystic fibrosis lung infections

December 12, 2017
PTEN is best known as a tumor suppressor, a type of protein that protects cells from growing uncontrollably and becoming cancerous. But according to a new study from Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC), PTEN has a second, ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.