Particle-mediated delivery was used as a method to vaccinate ruminants with a DNA vaccine. The optimal conditions for gene gun-based delivery of gold particles into the epidermal layer of the skin were determined. After delivery of the gold particles, an inflammatory response was observed. This response occurred regardless of the presence of plasmid and therefore was a result of the physical disturbance of the skin by the gold particles. To identify transfected cells, a plasmid expressing a green fluorescent protein was delivered into the skin. Fluorescent cells were located primarily in the outermost layers of the epidermis and outside the core of gold particles deposited by the gene gun. Cattle were immunized by gene gun with a plasmid expressing a truncated, secreted form of bovine herpesvirus-1 glycoprotein D. Serum antibody responses, antigen-specific proliferation, and interferon-gamma secretion by peripheral blood lymphocytes were demonstrated. These immune responses were found to be of long duration and sufficient magnitude to protect cattle against challenge with bovine herpesvirus-1, which demonstrates the efficacy of gene gun-based delivery of DNA vaccines to target species.
Copyright 1999 Academic Press.