A Gorilla Adenovirus-Based Vaccine against Zika Virus Induces Durable Immunity and Confers Protection in Pregnancy

Cell Rep. 2019 Sep 3;28(10):2634-2646.e4. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2019.08.005.


The teratogenic potential of Zika virus (ZIKV) has made the development of an effective vaccine a global health priority. Here, we generate two gorilla adenovirus-based ZIKV vaccines that encode for pre-membrane (prM) and envelope (E) proteins (GAd-Zvp) or prM and the ectodomain of E protein (GAd-Eecto). Both vaccines induce humoral and cell-mediated immune responses and prevent lethality after ZIKV challenge in mice. Protection is antibody dependent, CD8+ T cell independent, and for GAd-Eecto requires the complement component C1q. Immunization of GAd-Zvp induces antibodies against a key neutralizing epitope on domain III of E protein and confers durable protection as evidenced by memory B and long-lived plasma cell responses and challenge studies 9 months later. In two models of ZIKV infection during pregnancy, GAd-Zvp prevents maternal-to-fetal transmission. The gorilla adenovirus-based vaccine platform encoding full-length prM and E genes is a promising candidate for preventing congenital ZIKV syndrome and possibly infection by other flaviviruses.

Keywords: Zika virus; adaptive immunity; flavivirus; pathogenesis; pregnancy; vaccine.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adenoviridae / immunology*
  • Animals
  • Antibody Formation / immunology
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Female
  • Fetus / pathology
  • Fetus / virology
  • Gorilla gorilla / virology*
  • Humans
  • Immunity*
  • Immunologic Memory
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Pregnancy
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Viral Vaccines / immunology
  • Zika Virus / immunology*


  • Viral Vaccines