3 years ago

Bioconjugation Approaches to Producing Subunit Vaccines Composed of Protein or Peptide Antigens and Covalently Attached Toll-Like Receptor Ligands

Bioconjugation Approaches to Producing Subunit Vaccines Composed of Protein or Peptide Antigens and Covalently Attached Toll-Like Receptor Ligands
Peter Michael Moyle, Zhenghui Xu
Traditional vaccines derived from attenuated or inactivated pathogens are effective at inducing antibody-based protective immune responses but tend to be highly reactogenic, causing notable adverse effects. Vaccines with superior safety profiles can be produced by subunit approaches, utilizing molecularly defined antigens (e.g., proteins and polysaccharides). These antigens, however, often elicit poor immunological responses, necessitating the use of adjuvants. Immunostimulatory adjuvants have the capacity to activate antigen presenting cells directly through specific receptors (e.g., Toll-like receptors (TLRs)), resulting in enhanced presentation of antigens as well as the secretion of proinflammatory chemokines and cytokines. Consequently, innate immune responses are amplified and adaptive immunity is generated. Recently, site-specific conjugation of such immunostimulatory adjuvants (e.g., TLR ligands) onto defined antigens has shown superior efficacy over unconjugated mixtures, suggesting that the development of chemically characterized immunostimulatory adjuvants and optimized approaches for their conjugation with antigens may provide a better opportunity for the development of potent, novel vaccines. This review briefly summarizes various TLR agonists utilized as immunostimulatory adjuvants and focuses on the development of techniques (e.g., recombinant, synthetic, and semisynthetic) for generating adjuvant–antigen fusion vaccines incorporating peptide or protein antigens.

Publisher URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.bioconjchem.7b00478

DOI: 10.1021/acs.bioconjchem.7b00478

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