ImQuest Publication Highlight: HBV Neutralization Assays

Self-assembling SARS-CoV-2 spike-HBsAg nanoparticles elicit potent and durable neutralizing antibody responses via genetic delivery

ImQuest assisted with HBV neutralization assays to support the the recent publication in npj Vaccines. See the abstract below:


While several COVID-19 vaccines have been in use, more effective and durable vaccines are needed to combat the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Here, we report highly immunogenic self-assembling SARS-CoV-2 spike-HBsAg nanoparticles displaying a six-proline-stabilized WA1 (wild type, WT) spike S6P on a HBsAg core. These S6P-HBsAgs bound diverse domain-specific SARS-CoV-2 monoclonal antibodies. In mice with and without a HBV pre-vaccination, DNA immunization with S6P-HBsAgs elicited significantly more potent and durable neutralizing antibody (nAb) responses against diverse SARS-CoV-2 strains than that of soluble S2P or S6P, or full-length S2P with its coding sequence matching mRNA-1273. The nAb responses elicited by S6P-HBsAgs persisted substantially longer than by soluble S2P or S6P and appeared to be enhanced by HBsAg pre-exposure. These data show that genetic delivery of SARS-CoV-2 S6P-HBsAg nanoparticles can elicit greater and more durable nAb responses than non-nanoparticle forms of stabilized spike. Our findings highlight the potential of S6P-HBsAgs as next generation genetic vaccine candidates against SARS-CoV-2.

Liu et al.

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