HelicoVax: epitope-based therapeutic Helicobacter pylori vaccination in a mouse model

Vaccine. 2011 Mar 3;29(11):2085-91. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2010.12.130. Epub 2011 Jan 12.


Helicobacter pylori is the leading cause of gastritis, peptic ulcer disease and gastric adenocarcinoma and lymphoma in humans. Due to the decreasing efficacy of anti-H. pylori antibiotic therapy in clinical practice, there is renewed interest in the development of anti-H. pylori vaccines. In this study an in silico-based approach was utilized to develop a multi-epitope DNA-prime/peptide-boost immunization strategy using informatics tools. The efficacy of this construct was then assessed as a therapeutic vaccine in a mouse model of gastric cancer induced by chronic H. pylori infection. The multi-epitope vaccine administered intranasally induced a broad immune response as determined by interferon-gamma production in ELISpot assays. This was associated with a significant reduction in H. pylori colonization compared with mice immunized with the same vaccine intramuscularly, given an empty plasmid, or given a whole H. pylori lysate intranasally as the immunogen. Total scores of gastric histological changes were not significantly different among the 4 experimental groups. These results suggest that further development of an epitope-based mucosal vaccine may be beneficial in eradicating H. pylori and reducing the burden of the associated gastric diseases in humans.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Bacterial Vaccines / immunology*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunospot Assay
  • Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte / immunology*
  • Female
  • Helicobacter Infections / immunology
  • Helicobacter Infections / therapy*
  • Helicobacter pylori / immunology
  • Immunity, Cellular
  • Immunization, Secondary
  • Interferon-gamma / immunology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Stomach / pathology
  • Stomach Neoplasms / immunology
  • Stomach Neoplasms / microbiology
  • Stomach Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Vaccines, DNA / immunology


  • Bacterial Vaccines
  • Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte
  • Vaccines, DNA
  • Interferon-gamma