Multicomponent gold-linked glycoconjugate vaccine elicits antigen-specific humoral and mixed th1-th17 immunity, correlated with increased protection against burkholderia pseudomallei

Daniel Tapia, Javier Sanchez-Villamil, Heather L. Stevenson, Alfredo G. Torres

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Burkholderia pseudomallei is the causative agent of melioidosis, a fatal disease with a high mortality rate. The intrinsic resistance to commonly used antibiotics combined with the complex bacterial life cycle has hampered the development of preventive and therapeutic interventions and vaccines. Furthermore, the need of humoral and cell-mediated immunity in protection against B. pseudomallei has complicated the development of effective vaccines. Antigen delivery vaccine platforms that promote humoral and cellular responses while maintaining a safe profile are a road-block to developing subunit vaccines against intracellular pathogens. Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) were used for the delivery of multicomponent antigens with the goal of inducing vaccine-mediated immunity, promoting protection against melioidosis disease. Different nanoglycoconjugates using predicted immunogenic protein candidates, Hcp1, FlgL, OpcP, OpcP1, OmpW, and hemagglutinin, were covalently coupled to AuNPs, together with the lipopolysaccharide (LPS) from Burkholderia thailandensis, which acted as an additional antigen. Animals immunized with individually coupled (AuNP-protein-LPS) formulations containing OpcP or OpcP1, together with CpG as an adjuvant, showed a significant increase in protection, whereas a nanovaccine combination (AuNP-Combo2-LPS) showed significant and complete protection against a lethal intranasal B. pseudomallei challenge. Animals immunized with AuNP-Combo2-LPS showed robust humoral antigen-specific (IgG and IgA) responses with higher IgG2c titer, indicating a TH1-skewed response and promotion of macrophage uptake. In addition, immunization with the nanovaccine combination resulted in a mixed antigen-specific TH1-TH17 cytokine profile after immunization. This study provides the basis for an elegant and refined multicomponent glycoconjugate vaccine formulation capable of eliciting both humoral and cell-mediated responses against lethal B. pseudomallei challenge. IMPORTANCE Melioidosis is a complex human disease associated with a wide range of complications caused by the Gram-negative bacillus Burkholderia pseudomallei. The global burden of melioidosis is estimated to have 165,000 cases per year and 89,000 fatal outcomes. The endemicity of B. pseudomallei includes a wide range of tropical regions in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and Australia. Therefore, a viable alternative to prevent human infections is the development of an effective vaccine; how-ever, no approved vaccine for human use is available. This study provides a vaccine strategy against B. pseudomallei and an immune-stimulatory platform to induce strong humoral and T-cell-mediated immunity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere01227-21
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 29 2021


  • Burkholderia pseudomallei
  • Gold nanoparticles
  • Melioidosis
  • Vaccine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Virology


Dive into the research topics of 'Multicomponent gold-linked glycoconjugate vaccine elicits antigen-specific humoral and mixed th1-th17 immunity, correlated with increased protection against burkholderia pseudomallei'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this