An effective vaccination strategy against human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) should include the induction of potent cellular immune responses against conserved HIV-1 antigens. We have generated five replication competent recombinant influenza viruses (rFlu/SIV Gag nos. 1-5) expressing different portions of Gag of simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV). Single intranasal immunizations in mice with each rFlu/SIV Gag viruses resulted in different degrees of protection against a challenge with recombinant vaccinia virus expressing SIV Gag. Immunized BALB/c mice had detectable CD8+ T cell responses specific for Gag peptide 185-199 when mice were vaccinated with rFlu/SIV Gag no. 3 virus, and for Gag peptides 281-295 and 285-299 when vaccinated with rFlu/SIV Gag no. 4 virus. Cellular immune responses against SIV Gag were further enhanced by a booster with a recombinant vaccinia virus expressing SIV Gag in both the spleen and local lymph node tissues, resulting in the induction of robust Gag-specific CD8+ T cell responses at both systemic and mucosal levels. We suggest that a prime-boost immunization regimen using recombinant influenza and vaccinia viruses expressing HIV Gag might represent an effective means to induce potent HIV-specific, protective CD8+ T cell responses.
- Cellular immunity
- Influenza virus vector
- Simian immunodeficiency virus