Currently, the only approved vaccine against TB is the attenuated Mycobacterium bovis strain
Bacillus Calmette–Guerin (BCG). BCG is highly variable in efficacy (from 0 to 80%), as evidenced by reports showing that it is efficacious in protecting children, but not adults, from TB [7, 8]. Also, emerging multidrug-resistant strains have contributed to the increase in the rate of mortality caused by TB . Thus, the development of a new and more effective vaccine is needed to control TB. As a consequence, the search for a new vaccine has intensified, especially in regard to the study of using immunodominant M. tuberculosis antigens such as Ag85A, Ag85B, ESAT-6, CFP-10 and TB10.4 (along with fusion proteins that combine these antigens) as vaccines. Such formulations have provided effective protection against M. tuberculosis in animal models [10–14]. In addition, studies have demonstrated that T cell-mediated Selleckchem EPZ 6438 immune responses are required to control TB disease. Nevertheless, the evidence suggests that the adjuvants play an important role in stimulating these cells. Many adjuvants have been used with vaccines, including the classical adjuvanted subunit vaccines, BGC, the aluminium salts and synthetic cationic adjuvants like IC31 [15–18]. However, the recent progress in the development of novel
delivery systems has allowed the fusion of M. tuberculosis antigens to biological molecules to couple the adjuvant with the antigen . In this regard, calreticulin Ponatinib has been of particular interest because it allows fused antigens to be directly targeted for MHC class I presentation because it can associate with peptides delivered to the endoplasmic reticulum by transporters associated with antigen processing (TAP-1 and TAP-2) and with MHC class I β2-microglobulin molecules [20–23]. In fact, tumour antigen linked to calreticulin can generate tumour-specific immunity and eradicate established tumours [24, 25]. Others have demonstrated
that calreticulin linked to the protective antigen domain IV from Bacillus anthracis enhances antibody responses . Here, we describe the development and characterization of a recombinant replication-deficient adenoviral vector that expresses immunogenic M. tuberculosis Ag ESAT-6 fused to calreticulin. Additionally, we evaluated its ability to induce the production of tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α crotamiton and interferon (IFN)-γ, two cytokines required for protective immunity, and its capacity to protect against a M. tuberculosis challenge. Our data demonstrate that the calreticulin–ESAT-6 and calreticulin–ESAT-6–CFP10 fusion proteins generate a specific immune response, but this response does not confer protection against pulmonary M. tuberculosis infection. Construction and characterization of the recombinant replication-deficient adenoviruses. The gene fusions ESAT-6–CFP10 and ESAT-6 were purchased from Invitrogen (Carlsbad, CA, USA) already cloned into pUC plasmids (pESAT-6–CFP10 and pESAT-6, respectively).