Noroviruses are the most frequent cause of acute gastroenteritis in humans of all ages. No vaccines are currently available. An intranasally delivered Norwalk (NV) virus-like particle (VLP) vaccine was recently shown to be well tolerated, immunogenic and to protect against infection in Phase 1 studies. Here, we examined B memory (B(M)) responses in volunteers who received the highest dosage levels of the NV-VLP vaccine (50 μg and 100 μg). We measured the frequency of NV-specific IgG and IgA-secreting B(M) cells in peripheral blood and the level of antibodies produced by these cells in culture. All subjects immunized with 100 μg of the NV-VLP vaccine and 90% of those who received 50 μg had significant IgA or IgG B(M) responses. The B(M) cell frequencies correlated with serum antibody levels and mucosally-primed antibody-secreting cell responses. This is the first demonstration of dose-dependent, functional B(M) responses in humans immunized intranasally with a NV-VLP vaccine.
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