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Author Notes:

Correspondence: Dr. Richard W. Compans and Dr. Sang-Moo Kang, Department of Microbiology and Immunology and Emory Vaccine Center, Emory University School of Medicine, 1510 Clifton Rd., Atlanta, GA 30322, USA; Emails: rcompan@emory.edu and skang2@emory.edu

or Dr. Mark R. Prausnitz, School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, 311 Ferst Dr., Atlanta, GA 30332, USA; Email: prausnitz@gatech.edu

Acknowledgments: The authors thank Dr. Robert G. Webster for providing the eight-plasmid system for generating reassortant virus.

Disclosures: M.R.P. is a consultant and inventor on patents licensed to companies with an interest in microneedles and the associated conflict of interest is being managed by Georgia Tech and Emory University.

R.W.C., S. M.K., and Emory University have equity in Zetra Biologicals which is developing VLP technology under license from Emory University.

The VLP system reported here is different from VLP vaccine products under development and the information in this manuscript is not directly related to those products.


Research Funding:

This work was supported in part by NIH/NIBIB grant EB006369 (M.R.P.), NIH/NIAID grant AI0680003 and AI074579 (R.W.C.), the Georgia Research Alliance (S.M.K) and the Korea Research Foundation Grant KRF-2007-357-C00088 (J.M.S).


  • H5N1
  • pandemic vaccine
  • single dose
  • skin vaccination
  • microneedles

Improved protection against avian influenza H5N1 virus by a single vaccination with virus-like particles in skin using microneedles


Journal Title:

Antiviral Research


Volume 88, Number 2


, Pages 244-247

Type of Work:

Article | Post-print: After Peer Review


Summary To develop a more effective vaccination method against H5N1 virus, we investigated the immunogenicity and protective efficacy after skin vaccination using microneedles coated with influenza virus-like particles containing hemagglutinin derived from A/Vietnam/1203/04 H5N1 virus (H5 VLPs). A single microneedle vaccination of mice with H5 VLPs induced increased levels of antibodies and provided complete protection against lethal challenge without apparent disease symptoms. In contrast, intramuscular injection with the same vaccine dose showed low levels of antibodies and provided only partial protection accompanied by severe body weight loss. Post-challenge analysis suggested that improved protection was associated with lower lung viral titers and enhanced generation of recall antibody secreting cells by microneedle vaccination. Thus, this study provides evidence that skin delivery of H5 VLP vaccines using microneedles designed for self-administration induces improved protection compared to conventional intramuscular immunization.

Copyright information:

© 2010 Elsevier B.V. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

This is an Open Access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommerical-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/).

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