Advax augments B and T cell responses upon influenza vaccination via the respiratory tract and enables complete protection of mice against lethal influenza virus challenge

J Control Release. 2018 Oct 28;288:199-211. doi: 10.1016/j.jconrel.2018.09.006. Epub 2018 Sep 12.


Administration of influenza vaccines via the respiratory tract has potential benefits over conventional parenteral administration, inducing immunity directly at the site of influenza exposure as well as being needle free. In this study, we investigated the suitability of Advax™, a stable particulate polymorph of inulin, also referred to as delta inulin, as a mucosal adjuvant for whole inactivated influenza vaccine (WIV) administered either as a liquid or dry powder formulation. Spray freeze-drying produced Advax-adjuvanted WIV powder particles in a size range (1-5 μm) suitable for inhalation. The physical and biological characteristics of both WIV and Advax remained unaltered both by admixing WIV with Advax and by spray freeze drying. Upon intranasal or pulmonary immunization, both liquid and dry powder formulations containing Advax induced significantly higher systemic, mucosal and cellular immune responses than non-adjuvanted WIV formulations. Furthermore, pulmonary immunization with Advax-adjuvanted WIV led to robust memory B cell responses along with an increase of lung localization factors i.e. CXCR3, CD69, and CD103. A less pronounced but still positive effect of Advax was seen on memory T cell responses. In contrast to animals immunized with WIV alone, all animals pulmonary immunized with a single dose of Advax-adjuvanted WIV were fully protected with no visible clinical symptoms against a lethal dose of influenza virus. These data confirm that Advax is a potent mucosal adjuvant that boosts vaccine-induced humoral and cellular immune responses both in the lung and systemically with major positive effects on B-cell memory and complete protection against live virus. Hence, respiratory tract immunization, particularly via the lungs, with Advax-adjuvanted WIV formulation as a liquid or dry powder is a promising alternative to parenteral influenza vaccination.

Keywords: Advax; Immune mechanisms; Inhalation; Mucosal; Powders; Protection; Whole inactivated influenza vaccine.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / administration & dosage*
  • Administration, Inhalation
  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Viral / immunology
  • B-Lymphocytes / drug effects
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Female
  • Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype / immunology*
  • Influenza Vaccines / administration & dosage*
  • Inulin / administration & dosage
  • Inulin / analogs & derivatives*
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Orthomyxoviridae Infections / prevention & control
  • Respiratory Mucosa / drug effects
  • Respiratory Mucosa / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes / drug effects
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Vaccines, Inactivated / administration & dosage*


  • Adjuvants, Immunologic
  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Influenza Vaccines
  • Vaccines, Inactivated
  • delta inulin
  • Inulin