Immunological Analysis of a CCHFV mRNA Vaccine Candidate in Mouse Models

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Farzani T. A., Foldes K., ERGÜNAY K., GÜRDAL H., Bastug A., ÖZKUL A.

VACCINES, vol.7, no.3, 2019 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 7 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/vaccines7030115
  • Journal Name: VACCINES
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Development of new vaccine platforms against viral diseases is considered urgent. In recent years, mRNA constructs have attracted great interest in this field due to unique advantages over conventional gene transfer platforms. In the present study, we developed a new naked conventional mRNA vaccine expressing the non-optimized small (S) segment of the Ank-2 strain of Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever virus (CCHFV). We then analyzed its single and booster dose immunogenicity and protection potential in the challenge assay in two mice models, including IFN alpha/beta/gamma R-/- and C57BL/6. The results obtained from the immunological assays, namely IL-4 and IFN-gamma ELISPOT, intracellular IFN-gamma staining, in-house sandwich ELISA, and survival data, demonstrated that our construct elicited the production of anti-nucleocapsid (N) specific immune responses in both mice models. A 100% protection rate was only obtained in the booster dose group of IFN alpha/beta/gamma R-/- mice, indicating that this platform needs further optimization in future studies. In conclusion, we assessed a novel approach in CCHFV vaccination by introducing a conventional mRNA platform which can be considered in future experiments as an efficient and safe way to battle this disease.