Single-shot live-attenuated chikungunya vaccine in healthy adults: a phase 1, randomised controlled trial

Lancet Infect Dis. 2020 Oct;20(10):1193-1203. doi: 10.1016/S1473-3099(20)30238-3. Epub 2020 Jun 1.


Background: Chikungunya disease, which results in incapacitating arthralgia, has been reported worldwide. We developed a live-attenuated chikungunya virus (CHIKV) vaccine candidate designed for active immunisation of the general population living in endemic regions, as well as serving as a prophylactic measure for travellers to endemic areas.

Methods: This single-blind, randomised, dose-escalation, phase 1 study investigated as primary outcome safety of a live-attenuated CHIKV vaccine candidate. At two professional clinical trial centres in Illinois and Alabama, USA, healthy volunteers aged 18-45 years were randomly assigned (1:1:2) to one of three escalating dose groups (low dose 3·2 × 103 per 0·1 mL; medium dose 3·2 × 104 per 1 mL; or high dose 3·2 × 105 50% tissue culture infection dose per 1 mL) and received a single-shot immunisation on day 0. Individuals in all groups were revaccinated with the highest dose on either month 6 or 12, and followed up for 28 days after revaccination. The safety analysis included all individuals who received the single vaccination; the immunogenicity analysis, which was a secondary outcome, included all individuals who completed the study without major protocol deviations (per-protocol population). The study is registered with, NCT03382964, and is complete.

Findings: The study was done between March 5, 2018, and Jul 23, 2019, with 120 adults recruited and enrolled between March 5 and June 21, 2018, and assigned to receive a low (n=31), medium (n=30), or high (n=59) dose of the vaccine. The vaccine was safe in the high-dose group and well tolerated in the low-dose and medium-dose groups. Four (7%) of 59 vaccinees in the high-dose group reported any local reaction, and 11 (36%), 12 (40%), and 40 (68%) volunteers in the low-dose, medium-dose, and high-dose groups, respectively, reported any solicited systemic reaction. No vaccine-related serious adverse events were reported. Data up to month 12 after a single immunisation of the 120 healthy volunteers showed a good immunogenicity profile with 100% seroconversion rates achieved at day 14 (103 [100%] of 103) and sustained for 1 year across all dose groups. Mean peak antibody titres at day 28 ranged from 592·6 to 686·9 geometric mean titres from the low-dose to high-dose groups, respectively. A single vaccination was sufficient to induce sustaining high-titre neutralising antibodies, as shown by the absence of an anamnestic response after any revaccination ranging from 94% to 100% of participants. Following revaccination, vaccinees were protected from vaccine-induced viraemia.

Interpretation: A novel live-attenuated CHIKV vaccine was well tolerated and highly immunogenic in an adult population and could be an effective intervention for prophylaxis of chikungunya disease worldwide.

Funding: Valneva, Vienna, Austria; Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation and EU Horizon 2020.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Neutralizing
  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Chikungunya Fever / prevention & control*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunization Schedule
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Vaccines, Attenuated / immunology
  • Viral Vaccines / administration & dosage*
  • Viral Vaccines / adverse effects
  • Viral Vaccines / immunology*
  • Young Adult


  • Antibodies, Neutralizing
  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Vaccines, Attenuated
  • Viral Vaccines

Associated data