Divergent H7 immunogens offer protection from H7N9 virus challenge.

TitleDivergent H7 immunogens offer protection from H7N9 virus challenge.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsKrammer F, Albrecht RA, Tan GS, Margine I, Hai R, Schmolke M, Runstadler J, Andrews SF, Wilson PC, Cox RJ, Treanor JJ, GarcĂ­a-Sastre A, Palese P
JournalJ Virol
Date Published2014 Apr
KeywordsAnimals, Antibodies, Viral, Hemagglutinin Glycoproteins, Influenza Virus, Humans, Influenza A virus, Influenza A Virus, H7N9 Subtype, Influenza Vaccines, Influenza, Human, Mice, Mice, Inbred BALB C, Vaccination

<p><b>UNLABELLED: </b>The emergence of avian H7N9 viruses in humans in China has renewed concerns about influenza pandemics emerging from Asia. Vaccines are still the best countermeasure against emerging influenza virus infections, but the process from the identification of vaccine seed strains to the distribution of the final product can take several months. In the case of the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, a vaccine was not available before the first pandemic wave hit and therefore came too late to reduce influenza morbidity. H7 vaccines based on divergent isolates of the Eurasian and North American lineages have been tested in clinical trials, and seed strains and reagents are already available and can potentially be used initially to curtail influenza-induced disease until a more appropriately matched H7N9 vaccine is ready. In a challenge experiment in the mouse model, we assessed the efficacy of both inactivated virus and recombinant hemagglutinin vaccines made from seed strains that are divergent from H7N9 from each of the two major H7 lineages. Furthermore, we analyzed the cross-reactive responses of sera from human subjects vaccinated with heterologous North American and Eurasian lineage H7 vaccines to H7N9. Vaccinations with inactivated virus and recombinant hemagglutinin protein preparations from both lineages raised hemagglutination-inhibiting antibodies against H7N9 viruses and protected mice from stringent viral challenges. Similar cross-reactivity was observed in sera of human subjects from a clinical trial with a divergent H7 vaccine. Existing H7 vaccine candidates based on divergent strains could be used as a first line of defense against an H7N9 pandemic. In addition, this also suggests that H7N9 vaccines that are currently under development might be stockpiled and used for divergent avian H7 strains that emerge in the future.</p><p><b>IMPORTANCE: </b>Sporadic human infections with H7N9 viruses started being reported in China in the early spring of 2013. Despite a significant drop in the number of infections during the summer months of 2013, an increased number of cases has already been reported for the 2013-2014 winter season. The high case fatality rate, the ability to bind to receptors in the human upper respiratory tract in combination with several family clusters, and the emergence of neuraminidase inhibitor-resistant variants that show no loss of pathogenicity and the ability to transmit in animal models have raised concerns about a potential pandemic and have spurred efforts to produce vaccine candidates. Here we show that antigen preparations from divergent H7 strains are able to induce protective immunity against H7N9 infection.</p>

Alternate JournalJ. Virol.
PubMed ID24453375
PubMed Central IDPMC3993735
Grant List1P01AI097092-01A1 / AI / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
HHSN26620070010C / / PHS HHS / United States
HHSN272201000054C / AI / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
HHSN272200900026C / / PHS HHS / United States
HHSN272200900026C / AO / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
HHSN272201000054C / / PHS HHS / United States
P01 AI097092 / AI / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
HHNSN266200700010C / NS / NINDS NIH HHS / United States