Design: Safety and immunogenicity of a recombinant 14kDa, fatty acid-binding protein(FABP) from Schistosoma mansoni (rSm14) were evaluated through an open, non-placebo-controlled, dose-standardized trial, performed at a single research site. The vaccine was formulated with glucopyranosyl lipid A (GLA) adjuvant in an oil-in-water emulsion (SE) and investigated in 20 male volunteers from a non-endemic area for schistosomiasis in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Fifty microgram rSm14 with 10 μg GLA-SE (rSm14/GLA-SE)/dose were given intramuscularly three times with 30-day intervals. Participants were assessed clinically, biochemically and immunologically for up to 120 days.
Methods: Participants were screened for inclusion by physical examination, haematology and blood chemistry; then followed to assess adverse events and immunogenicity. Sera were tested for IgG (total and isotypes) and IgE. T cell induction of cytokines IL-2, IL-5, IL-10, IFNγ and TNFα was assessed by Milliplex kit and flow cytometry.
Results: The investigational product showed high tolerability; some self-limited, mild adverse events were observed during and after vaccine administration. Significant increases in Sm14-specific total IgG, IgG1 and IgG3 were observed 30 days after the first vaccination with specific IgG2 and IgG4 after 60 days. An increase in IgE antibodies was not observed at any time point. The IgG response was augmented after the second dose and 88% of all vaccinated subjects had developed high anti-Sm14 IgG titres 90 days after the first injection. From day 60 and onwards, there was an increase in CD4(+) T cells producing single cytokines, particularly TNFα and IL-2, with no significant increase of multi-functional TH1 cells.
Conclusion: Clinical trial data on tolerability and specific immune responses after vaccination of adult, male volunteers in a non-endemic area for schistosomiasis with rSm14/GLA-SE, support this product as a safe, strongly immunogenic vaccine against schistosomiasis paving the way for follow-up Phase 2 trials. Study registration ID: NCT01154049 at http://www.clinicaltrials.gov.
Keywords: Brazil; Fatty acid-binding protein (FABP); GLA-SE; Phase 1 clinical trial; Recombinant vaccine; Schistosomiasis; rSm14.
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