First vaccine for viral hepatitis C could become a reality

Apr 01, 2011

Berlin, Germany, Friday 01 April 2011: Early data from phase I trials of an HCV vaccine presented today at the International Liver CongressTM show encouraging results, with high immunogenicity and good safety profile.1,2

In the first study1, a therapeutic T-cell vaccine, based on novel adenoviral vectors was used on a small population of treatment naive patients with chronic genotype 1 HCV infection. Intra-muscular vaccination was administered 2 or 14 weeks into a 48-week course of treatment with Peg-IFNa2a/ribavirin. 50% of vaccinated patients had CD4+ and CD8+ HCV specific T-cell responses as detected by ELISpot at 2-8 weeks post boost, showing a strong immunogenicity for the vaccine. Local and systemic adverse events to vaccination were mild, with no evidence of liver immunopathology (measured by liver transaminase levels).

The second study2 looked at the potential for a prophylactic vaccine based on similar novel adenoviral vectors technology (replicative-defective human Ad6 and a novel simian AdCh3 vector that encode 1985 amino-acids derived from the NS3-5 region of a genotype-1b strain). 27 healthy volunteers were vaccinated following a double prime, heterologous boost strategy. The induced polyfunctional CD4+ and CD8+ T cells responses which were maintained up to 52 weeks post prime. Overall vaccination was very well tolerated with mild/moderate local and systemic reactions and no serious adverse advents.

Professor Heiner Wedemeyer, EASL's Secretary General commented: "Vaccines are an exciting area of research now with the potential to add to the range of treatments available for patients with chronic . These are early data but results are very encouraging indeed and as experts, we look forward to more scientific evidence being made available to support this new technology as a future treatment option as well as potentially preventing infection."

Previous research and data presented at the International Liver Congress shows that vaccination with adenoviral vectors induced highly potent and durable T-cell responses in healthy human and that similar vectors may prevent chronic infection in animals.3 This is the first time the and safety of vaccination was tested on HCV patients and healthy subjects.

Explore further: Ebola expert calls for European anti-virus 'corps'

More information: References

1. Kelly C et al. A therapeutic vaccine for HCV based on novel, rare, adenoviral vectors. Abstract presented at the International Liver CongressTM 2011. www1.easl.eu/easl2011/program/Orals/329.htm

2. Barnes E. Phase I trials of a highly immunogenic and durable T-cell vaccine for Hepatitis C virus based on novel, rare, adenoviral vectors. Abstract presented at the International Liver CongressTM 2011. www1.easl.eu/easl2011/program/… ers/Abstract1018.htm

3. Folgori A et al. A T-cell HCV vaccine eliciting effective immunity against heterologous virus challenge in chimpanzees. Nature Medicine - 12, 190 - 197 (2006)

Provided by European Association for the Study of the Liver

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Possible hepatitis C vaccine

Sep 05, 2007

Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) infects up to 500,000 people in the UK alone, many of the infections going undiagnosed. It is the single biggest cause of people requiring a liver transplant in Britain. Now, in a collaborative effort ...

Recommended for you

Ebola expert calls for European anti-virus 'corps'

21 hours ago

Europe will be "vulnerable" if it does not regard viruses as a "national security issue" like the United States, the microbiologist who discovered Ebola said in an interview published Friday.

In Liberia, Ebola steals Christmas

22 hours ago

The Ebola epidemic has cast a dark shadow over Christmas this year in Liberia, where small businesses are especially feeling the pinch.

Firm recalls caramel apples amid listeria fears

Dec 25, 2014

A Missouri firm is recalling its Happy Apple brand caramel apples because of the potential that they could be contaminated with listeria. The recall comes after at least three deaths and at least 29 illnesses in 10 states ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.