Mucosal application of gp140 encoding DNA polyplexes to different tissues results in altered immunological outcomes in mice

Jamie F S Mann, Paul F McKay, Samantha Arokiasamy, Reeyeshkumar K Patel, John S Tregoning, Robin J Shattock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review


Increasing evidence suggests that mucosally targeted vaccines will enhance local humoral and cellular responses whilst still eliciting systemic immunity. We therefore investigated the capacity of nasal, sublingual or vaginal delivery of DNA-PEI polyplexes to prime immune responses prior to mucosal protein boost vaccination. Using a plasmid expressing the model antigen HIV CN54gp140 we show that each of these mucosal surfaces were permissive for DNA priming and production of antigen-specific antibody responses. The elicitation of systemic immune responses using nasally delivered polyplexed DNA followed by recombinant protein boost vaccination was equivalent to a systemic prime-boost regimen, but the mucosally applied modality had the advantage in that significant levels of antigen-specific IgA were detected in vaginal mucosal secretions. Moreover, mucosal vaccination elicited both local and systemic antigen-specific IgG(+) and IgA(+) antibody secreting cells. Finally, using an Influenza challenge model we found that a nasal or sublingual, but not vaginal, DNA prime/protein boost regimen protected against infectious challenge. These data demonstrate that mucosally applied plasmid DNA complexed to PEI followed by a mucosal protein boost generates sufficient antigen-specific humoral antibody production to protect from mucosal viral challenge.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e67412
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • Administration, Intranasal
  • Administration, Intravaginal
  • Administration, Sublingual
  • Administration, Topical
  • Animals
  • Antibodies/immunology
  • Antibody Formation/immunology
  • Female
  • Glycoproteins/administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Humoral
  • Immunization, Secondary
  • Immunoglobulin A/blood
  • Immunoglobulin G/blood
  • Influenza, Human/immunology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Nasal Mucosa/immunology
  • Orthomyxoviridae Infections/immunology
  • Spleen/cytology
  • Vaccination
  • Vaccines, DNA/administration & dosage


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