Research ArticleInfectious Disease

A synthetic consensus anti–spike protein DNA vaccine induces protective immunity against Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus in nonhuman primates

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Science Translational Medicine  19 Aug 2015:
Vol. 7, Issue 301, pp. 301ra132
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aac7462

Emerging vaccines

Public outcry drives vaccine research during outbreaks of emerging infectious disease, but public support for vaccine development dries up when the outbreaks are resolved, frequently leaving promising vaccine candidates sitting on the shelf. DNA vaccines, with their potential for rapid large-scale production, may help overcome this hurdle. Muthumani et al. report the development of a synthetic DNA vaccine against Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) that induces neutralizing antibodies in mice, macaques, and camels—natural hosts of MERS-CoV. Indeed, macaques vaccinated with this DNA vaccine were protected from viral challenge. These promising results support further development of DNA vaccines for emerging infections.

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