|Title of Invention||
"A RECOMBINANT DENGUE VIRUS (DEN) REPLICON USED AS VACCINE AGAINST TUMOR AND VIRUS"
|Abstract||Title: "A RECOMBINANT DENGUE VIRUS (DEN) REPLICON USED AS VACCINE AGAINST TUMOR AND VIRUS" A recombinant dengue virus (DEN) replicon used as vaccine against tumor and virus characterized in that there is deletion of preM and comprising the following nucleotide sequences: a)a DEN 5' untranslated region (5'-UTR); b)a nucleic acid encoding at least the first 20 amino acids of the DEN capsid protein; c) a nucleic acid encoding the signal peptide of the DEN NS1 protein; d) a nucleic acid encoding DEN non-structural proteins; e) DEN 3'-untranslated region (3'-UTR); and f)an exogenous nucleotide sequence of 100-2000 bp, such as a tumor antigen gene, a virus antigen gene or an immunoregulator gene, located between b) and c), which optionally has a 3' release element sequence.|
|Full Text||Virus-like particle containing a dengue virus recombinant replicon
Field of the Invention
The invention relates to dengue virus (DEN) and in particular to a recombinant virus that is
prepared by replacing DEN structural protein genes with non-dengue transgenes, such as,
therapeutic antigens, and its production and application.
Cancer threatens human health seriously. Some cancers have been linked to a variety of
viruses, most notably human papillomavirus (HPV), which is responsible for cervical cancer.
The prevalence of HPV infection of the female genital tract has a positive correlation with the
pathological progression of the diseased cervix presenting in the normal progression of the
disease beginning with chronic cervicitis -» pseudocondyloma -* verruca lesions -* condyloma
acuminate -* cervical intraepithelial neoplasia -* cervical cancers. HPV infection has been
shown to be extremely common affecting 10-40 percent of women in China and 40-60 percent
of women in Europe and the Western Countries.
Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer after breast cancer among women
worldwide. According to WHO, there are 1.7 million cervical cancer patients diagnosed
worldwide, and approximately 500,000 new cases are diagnosed per year. There are as many
as 200,000 deaths per year. There are nearly 140,000 cervical cancer patients in China, and
40,000 new cases are diagnosed every year. Moreover, more than 75 percent of cervical
cancers were found to be associated with HPV 16 and/or HPV 18 infection.
The current treatments for cervical cancer are surgery, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, and
occasionally such treatments are combined with therapies known as Chinese medicine, herb
medicine, and so on. Unfortunately, the effect is not satisfactory, and the five-year survival rate
is 65 percent. The prognosis following the recurrence of disease is extremely poor, with only
five percent survival over two years. The expense for cervical cancer screening and therapy in
the USA is approximately 570 million dollars per year.
The three traditional methods for cervical cancer therapy, surgery, chemotherapy and
radiotherapy, have many limitations, such as high disease recurrence rate, serious side effects
and tolerance. Because of its theoretically high specificity and low side effects, biotherapy,
especially immuriotherapy and gene therapy, is being viewed as a new strategy for tumor
therapy. The sciences of immunotherapy and gene therapy are now being applied in the
treatment and cure of many different diseases and the promise of biotherapy is being realized.
In the area of cancer treatment vaccines, a number of different strategies are being pursued.
The earliest tumor vaccines with good safety, cannot induce effective cellular immune
responses because the antigen generally cannot be expressed by a host cell.
DNA virus vector vaccines:
A kind of live vaccine with a DNA genome as the vector, can effectively replicate and express
an oncogene in vivo and can continually stimulate the cellular immune system to produce
cytotoxic T cells (CTLs) against tumors. But to avoid oncogenicity, only parts of the oncogene
are commonly employed as the antigen. Thus the immunogenicity of the antigen is reduced.
Another problem of this type of vaccine is safety.
Borysiewicz LK et al (Lancet. 1996 Jun 1:347(9014): 1523-7.) reported an HPV vaccine with
vaccinia virus as vector. But, most people have antibody to vaccinia so its application is limited.
Moreover, boosters of the vaccine are useless because of the existing or developed immune
response to the vector.
WO0153467 provides recombinant yellow fever virus (YFV), which comprise exogenous
nucleotide sequences. Infection of a host cell with a recombinant YFV provides for expression
of the exogenous nucleic acid in a host cell and production of an antigenic polypeptide encoded
by the exogenous nucleic acid. Such recombinant YFV are useful in eliciting an immune
response to the exogenous polypeptide. But the recombinant YFV, retaining the whole YFV
genome without deletion of some relevant cis genes, is replicable and thus, infectious. So the
recombinant YFV as a vaccine is not safe, although its preparation does not need a packaging
WO9928487 provides an expression and delivery method of exogenous sequences by the
flavivirus, kunjin virus (KUN). KUN replicons are constructed by the deletion of part of the KUN
structural genes and the insertion of an exogenous sequence (i.e., non-KUN) into the genome,
Hillowed by packaging as KUN virus-like particles (VLP) in host cells, along with infection by
other virus carrying the complementing coding region of the deleted KUN structural protein
gene(s). However, the titer of VLP was unsatisfactory. Also, the booster immunization will be
less effective. The KUN genome is stable in plasmids, which can be cloned and recombined
with traditional methods. However, that strategy does not apply to other flaviviruses. For
example, DEN sequences have lower stability in plasmids than KUN, probably because KUN
belongs to the Japanese encephalitis virus group whereas DEN belongs to the different Dengue
virus group. The two groups have only 45% homology at the level of the genome. So it is hard
to construct DEN replicons and to obtain DEN VLPs directly following the teachings of
WO02072803 teaches a method for construction of DEN subgenomic replicons and use thereof
for a DEN vaccine. Nevertheless, it is difficult to apply the invention because there is some
insufficient information in the application.
Antigen presenting cells (APC) vaccines:
The preparation and use of APC vaccines is, for example, based on the approach whereby
dendritic cells (DC) from a patient are cultured and amplified, transformed to express a tumorassociated
antigen (TAA) or tumor-specific antigen (TSA), and the treated DC cells then
become an APC vaccine for the patient. The APCs will activate T cells of the patient to kill
tumor cell when the vaccine is injected into patient. However, such an APC vaccine is patientspecific
so these vaccines can't be administered en masse to a wide population. Moreover, this
therapy is time-consuming, labor-consuming, is associated with a high-cost because it is difficult
to culture DCs, it is costly to amplify the transformed cells, it can be difficult to activate and
obtain maturation of DCs for proper and effective antigen presentation and there are quality
control issues because of the difficult vaccine preparation process and the individual nature of
In summary, there is an urgent requirement for novel vaccines with high capacity, host cells are
long-lived, can carry large inserts and are easy to propagate. Such vaccines also are not
oncogenic and can be administered repeatedly.
Summary of the Invention
The invention aims to provide novel products applicable to industrial production, which have
good safety, high tiler, good booster effects, especially the vaccines against tumor and virus.
In a first aspect the invention provides recombinant DEN with a deletion of preM and comprising
of follow nucleotide sequences at least:
a) DEN 5' untranslated region (5'-UTR);
b) The coding region of the first 20 amino acids of the DEN capsid protein;
c) The coding region of the signal peptide of the DEN NS1 protein;
d) The coding region of all the DEN non-structure proteins
e) DEN 3'-end untranslation region (3'-UTR)
f) Exogenous nucleotide sequences (i.e., non-DEN) between b) and c)
In preferred embodiments, the 3' end of any exogenous nucleotide sequence contains 3'
release elements upstream of the coding region of the NS1 signal peptide, which can be the 5'
release elements. These release elements can be a nucleotide sequence obtained from the
autoprotease of foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) (SEQ ID NO: 3), or nucleotide sequence
encoding the substrate of signal peptide protease (SEQ ID NO: 44) or both.
In another preferred embodiment, DEN is obtained from any one of the following: DEN type I,
DEN type II, DEN type III, or DEN type IV.
In another preferred embodiment, the coding region of the NS1 signal peptide is composed of
the about last 72 nucleotides of the 3' terminus of the E gene. Alternatively, a suitable signal
peptide encoding sequence can be subcloned upstream in an operable situs of the NS1 coding
In another preferred embodiment, the exogenous sequence encodes an HPV antigen,
immunoregulators or both.
In a second aspect, the present invention also provides VLPs comprising a DEN recombinant
replicon and DEN structural proteins.
In a third aspect, the present invention also provides pharmaceutical compositions containing a
DEN recombinant replicon or a DEN-VLP, and pharmaceutically acceptable carrier.
In a fourth another aspect, the present invention also provides use of a DEN recombinant
replicon or a DEN-VLP for prophylactic and therapeutic use as a drug for tumor and viral
In a fifth aspect, the present invention also provides cells for a packaging system encapsulating
DEN recombinant replicons into VLP. These packaging cells are selected from:
a) Cells transfected by a plasmid with deleted structural genes of a Dengue recombinant
b) Cells transfected by a vector derived from a helper virus containing sequences of the
structural proteins which are deleted from the DEN recombinant replicon (a), and
c) Cells integrated with structural genes which are deleted from the DEN recombinant
replicon (a) in the genome thereof, and above cells express DEN structural proteins for
complementing replicon packaging and the structural gene expression doesn't affect the
growth of the host cells.
In a sixth aspect, the present invention provides a method for production of a virus-like particle
(VLP) as herein described comprising the steps of:
a) Introducing into a DEN packaging cell line, a DEN recombinant replicon or a VLP
containing said replicon of claim 1;
b) Culturing that cell line either so it can express the DEN structural proteins; or introducing
into that cell line replicons of a helper virus containing a DEN structural gene if the cell
line cannot express that DEN structural gene, then culturing the cell line; and
c) Collecting DEN-VLP containing DEN recombinant replicons.
In another preferred embodiment, said packaging cells contain a DEN structural protein
expression vector, selected from a vector with an NS3 deletion and a Tet-regulated vector.
Detailed Description of the Drawings
Fig 1 shows preparation of a Dengue vector carrying HPV sequences (in method 1 of example
Fig 2 shows an alternative preparation of a Dengue vector carrying HPV sequences by another
method (in method 4 of example 4)
Detailed Description of Preferred Embodiments
The present invention relates to materials and methods for making a DEN-VLP preparation, as
exemplified in the construction of a VLP carrying expressed HPV sequences with good safety,
high liter and good booster effects.
"Nt," as used herein, means a nucleotide.
"Release element" refers to nucleotide sequences at the 3' end of a structural polypeptide
coding sequence or at the 5' end of the NS1 signal peptide-coding region, used to enhance
release of the polypeptide by a signal peptide protease without unrelated sequences after
protein translation. The preferred release element selects from nucleotide sequence encoding
Foot-And-Mouth virus hydrolytic enzyme as SEQ ID NO: 3 showed and nucleotide sequence
encoding signal peptide hydrolytic enzyme substrate as SEQ ID NO:44 showed or their
combination. Usually there is only one "release element", but there are many "release element"
The terms "immunological activity" or "immunogenicity" refers to the ability to induce a specific
humoral and/or cellular immunity of a mammal by natural, recombinant or synthetic
immunogens, such as peptides.
The terms "antigen polypeptide" or "antigen peptide" refers to the amino acid sequence eliciting
an immune response of a mammal whether single or combined with other helper molecules (for
example, Human histocompatibility antigen (HLA) I or II).
The term "immune response" refers to a cellular and/or humoral immune response, for example,
sufficient to inhibit or prevent, for example, infection or disease caused by microbes.
The terms "object," "individual" or "patient" refers to any object which needs diagnosis or
therapy, especially mammals, such as human. Other objects include other mammals, such as,
cow, dog, cat, cavy, rabbit, rat, mouse, horse etc.
Based on the experiments, the DEN recombinant replicon will have the following characteristics.
1. All of the full non-structural gene sequences must be present in the replicon. Any deletion of
a structural gene or loss of expression of a structural gene must be one that does not have a
negative impact on non-structural protein expression and doesn't result in a frame shift mutation
of a non-structural protein and a signal peptide thereof.
2. The first 60 or so nt of the C protein gene (the coding sequence of the first 20 amino acids of
the C protein, that is, the amino terminus of the capsid protein) must be present in the vector
because those sequences are complementary to the 5'-UTR and 3'-UTR sequences which form
a circle for DEN gene replication and virus packaging. If that region is shorter than 60 nt, the
efficiency of VLP formation will decrease. Sequences longer than 60 nt (for example, 81, 99,
120, 150 and 180 nt) can form VLP, however, the possible length of any exogenous gene will
decrease accordingly because of packaging limitations. So the optimal dimension is retention of
about the first 60-150 nt of the 5' terminus of the C protein gene, optimally 60-120 nt.
3. The non-structural protein NS1 signal peptide, namely the last 24 or so amino acids of the E
protein, must be present in the replicon. The corresponding coding sequence is the last about
72 nts of the E protein gene. If shorter than 72 nts, the efficiency of VLP formation will
decrease. If longer than 72 nt (for example, 81, 99, 120 or 150 nt), the vector can still form a
VLP, however, the length of the exogenous gene insert will decrease accordingly because of
packaging limitations. So the optimal dimension is retention of 72-150 nt, optimally 60-120 nt.
4. The deletion of a structural gene and insertion of an exogenous gene in the deleted site can't
affect NS1 signal peptide function, as well as function of the downstream non-structural genes.
The DEN structural protein-coding region includes C-preM-E. Usually, portions of the C-preM-E
coding sequence can be deleted (about 100-2000 bp, optimally 500-2000 bp). Another optimal
method is complete preM deletion to enhance safety.
The DEN virus that can be used to make a vector in the present invention has no special
limitation and can be any subtype of DEN Virus. Four subtypes of DEN genome that can be
used, for example, have the following ATCC accession numbers:
DEN virus type I M87512;
N virus type ii M29095;
DEN virus type ill M93130;and
DEN virus type IV AF289029.
DEN virus has a property of being bound by dendritic ceils, which can enhance vaccine effects.
Furthermore, DEN has an ADE property (antibody dependent enhancement of infection), which
refers to the observation that after a first immunization of DEN, antibody dependent infection is
enhanced when the host is immunized with a different DEN subtype. So DEN is effective for
repetitive, booster immunization. The ADE phenomena can be used for exogenous protein
expression systems, which not only avoid neutralization of vector caused by repetitive
immunization, but also increases the efficiency of infection of vectors into cells and exogenous
protein delivery efficiency. Because DEN has four subtypes, any one can be used for an
exogenous expression vector, through further inoculation with different DEN recombinant
replicons, that is, of a different subtype, tends to intensify immunization efficiency.
Exogenous genes used in the present invention have no special limitation. It can be any
exogenous coding sequence, such as an aptamer, siRNA, ribozyme and the like, any
therapeutic gene, such as a gene encoding an antibody to VEGF, an interferon, a cytokine and
so on, a tumor antigen gene, a virus antigen gene, an immunoregulator gene and so on. The
representative antigens include (but not limited to): human HPV antigen (such as the E6 or E7
protein of the 16 and 18 subtype), HIV antigen, HBV antigen, HCV antigen, EBV antigen, HTLV-
1 antigen, MAGE, BAGE, CAGE etc. The length of an exogenous gene has no special
limitation, usually the foreign coding sequence is from about 100 bp to about 2000 bp, optimally
from about 150 bp to about 1200 bp. Furthermore, a release element, such as 2A, can be
added at the 3' end of an exogenous gene to ensure a high level of expression of the expressed
sequence. If the intercalated exogenous gene is a tumor antigen gene or a virus antigen gene,
said VLP can be used for prevention and therapy of tumor and virus diseases.
Taking human papilloma virus (HPV) as an example, the present invention provides
preventative and therapeutic compositions against diseases caused by HPV infection. Therein
said composition contains a VLP packaged using a DEN recombinant replicon using necessary
complementing DEN structural proteins. Therein said exogenous nucleic acid sequence of the
DEN recombinant replicon encodes an antigen of one or many HPV subtypes. The vector can
contain also a sequence encoding an immunoregulator, or the immunoregulator sequence may
be carried by a second vector. Therein said HPV antigen protein can be E6, E7 or an E6/E7
fusion or composite molecule oncoprotein of HPV 16 or HPV 18, or can be an HPV major
capsid protein L1 or minor capsid protein L2. Therein said immunoregulator can be a gene
sequence encoding a polypeptide with an immunoregulating activity obtained from, for example,
IL2, IL12, IL18, GM-CSF etc. or a functional portion thereof.
The composition provided by said invention has the advantage of being relatively nonimmunogenic
to the host, and thus can be administered repeatedly with effect. Such an antihuman
papilloma virus composition provides prevention and therapy for diseases caused by
papilloma virus, such as chronic cervicitis, pseudocondyloma, verrucous lesions, condyloma
acurninata, cervical intraepithelial neoplasia, cervical cancer etc.
Construction of said replicon can be processed as follows:
1. Construction of a full-length DEN genome sequence.
This can be fulfilled by normal PCR and ligation techniques as known in the art.
2. Deletion of parts of one or more DEN structural genes.
This can be fulfilled by homologous recombination or synthesis of a deleted sequence that is
cloned into and replaces the portion to be deleted from the DEN genome. A known method is
homologous recombination in yeast.
1. Insertion of an exogenous gene coding sequence.
Though the exogenous gene can be inserted into regions with partial structural gene deletion by
a known method, a preferred method is homologous recombination in yeast where sequences
homologous to two sites flanking the insertion site are ligated to the two ends of the exogenous
gene, introducing said construct into yeast along with a DEN genome DNA with a structural
gene deletion, then obtaining the replicon carrying the exogenous gene inserted therein through
homologous recombination. This recombination incidence approaches 100%, making
construction relatively easy, controllable and stable.
After obtaining the replicon, it can be introduced into packaging cells to produce VLP. A normal
method is after the DEN replicon is introduced into cells, and then the helper virus expressing a
necessary structural protein is introduced into those cells. Another method is construction of
expression packaging cells with an inducible or constitutive plasmid carrying the DEN structural
oene as a vector and then introduction of the replicon (or VLP) into these cells to produce VLP.
For example, constitutive packaging cells can be made that do not express a functional NS3
gene. The NS3 gene possesses a special packaging signal sequence and thus, a DEN
genome with an NS3 deletion can't be packaged into a VLP. So if the packaging cell doesn't
have a functional DEN NS3 gene, it can't be packaged into VLP themselves. VLP produced by
this packaging cell only contains a DEN recombinant replicon, and thus, there is no need to
screen amongst the replicons for those that are recombinant.
Specifically, methods include:
a) The packaging cells can contain tetracycline-regulated gene expression boxes for
expressing a DEN structural protein. Recombinant DEN RNA replicon is introduced
into packaging cell to produce VLP containing DEN replicon.
b) After a recombinant DEN replicon is introduced into cells and cultured (for example,
about 24 hrs), a helper virus, for example, an alpha virus replicon, expressing a
complementing DEN structural protein (or other expression vector) is introduced into
said cells to produce VLP containing DEN replicon.
c) If the packaging cell expresses a DEN genome with partial deletion of NS3 gene
expression, a recombinant DEN replicon is introduced into said packaging cell to
produce a VLP containing DEN replicon.
d) After infected with a VLP and cultured, cells are infected by a helper virus, such as an
alpha virus replicon, expressing a complementing DEN structural protein (or other
nonreplicable virus vector) to produce a VLP containing a DEN replicon.
The present invention also provides various compositions comprising such a recombinant DEN
replicon and/or a VLP, including a pharmaceutical composition.
Various compositions comprising such a recombinant DEN can include different buffers
according to practical purposes and substances suitable to other purposes required of a
pharmaceutical delivery form, as known in the art. These compositions generally contain
pharmaceutically available carriers, diluents and excipients as known in the pharmaceutic arts,
"Remington: Pharmacology and Pharmacological Practice" 19th ed. (1995) Mack Publishing Co.
Parmaceutical compositions can be made into a variety of forms, such as injection, solid forms,
such as grains, tablets, pills, suppositories and capsules, other liquid forms, such as a
suspension, a spray etc. The pharmaceutical grade organic or inorganic vectors and/or
attenuants suitable to oral or local use can be used for dispensing of various compositions
including therapeutically active compounds. For example, some of the known carriers include
water for injection, plant and animal oil and fats, and so on, as known in the art. The stabilizer,
wetting agent, emulsifier, salt suitable for controlling osmolarity, various buffers suitable for
maintenance of appropriate pH, surfactants, permeants to enhance transdermal movement and
so on can be used for auxiliary materials as known in the art.
The said recombinant DEN can be put into dispensing means as known in the art. Thus, for
example, the VLP can be put into dispensing through familiar methods of this field and suitable
pharmaceutical or transforming vehicles. The suitable vehicles are sterile saline. Other aqueous
or inaqueous iso-osmotic sterile injections and sterile suspensions also can be used
(pharmaceutically available vehicles, also familiar to technicians of this field).
Moreover, the said compositions can also contain other components such as an adjuvant, a
stabilizer, a pH regulator, a preservative etc. These components are familiar to technicians of
this field. Adjuvants include but are not limited to an aluminum adjuvant, a saponin adjuvant, a
Ribi adjuvant (Ribi ImmunoChem Research Inc., Hamilton, MT), a Montanide ISA adjuvant
(Seppic, Paris, France), a Hunter's TiterMax adjuvant (CytRx Corp., Norcross, GA), a Gerbu
adjuvant (Gerbu Biotechnik GmbH, Gaiberg, Germany) and so on. In addition, other
components for regulating and modifying the immunological response can be used.
Administration pathway and dose
The said recombinant DEN replicon and/ or VLP can be administered to an individual through
known methods. The said composition is often administered through a normal vaccine
administering pathway or modeling pathogen infection pathway. The pharmaceutically available
vehicles can be used when administrating vaccine compositions.
Normal and pharmaceutically available administration pathways include intranasal,
intramuscular, intratracheal, subcutaneous, intracutaneous, endovaginal, intrapulmonary,
intravenous, nasal, oral or other extraintestinal pathways. Combined administration can be
made if needed or it can be regulated according to the transgene, the disease, the disease
'condition and so on. The vaccine composition can be administered as a single dose or in
multiple doses, and also contain a booster dose to elicit and/or to maintain immunity.
"Effective dose" is given in an amount such that the availability of DEN recombinant replicon
and/or VLP is of an amount so as to elicit an immune response and effectively prevent a host
against a virus infection, tumor or other source of pathology etc. Usually, after infecting host
cells, every dose of vaccine is enough to produce from about 1 to about 1000 ug, or about 1 to
about 200 ug, or about 10 to about 100 ug of transgene. The vaccine effective dose calculated
with recombinant DEN nucleic acids as a basis usually includes administrating about 1 to about
1000 ug nucleic acids. Furthermore, the average range of vaccine effective dose is about 102 to
about 109, about 103 to about 107, or about 104 to about 105 plaque forming units (PFU). The
optimal dose of vaccine can be determined, for example, by antibody titer of experimental
objects and standard investigation methods of other reactions, as known in the art. Whether a
booster dose is needed can be detected by supervising immunity levels using immune assays
as known in the art. After evaluating serum antibody titer, one or more booster doses can be
administered. Administering adjuvant and/or immunological stimulant can enhance an immune
response to the target transgene.
Compared with known technology, the present invention has the following advantages:
1. Enhancement of immunological effectiveness.
a) The dendritic cell is the most effective antigen presenting cell. In the present invention,
antigen is effectively expressed and presented in said infected cells eliciting an effective
immune response against antigen with a DEN replicon as vector, capitalizing on the
affinity of DEN for dendritic cells..
b) Utilizing the characteristic of different DEN, repetitive infection and the ADE
phenomenon, the user can inoculate repetitively to enhance immunological effects.
c) As tumor antigen and virus antigen, an E6 and/or E7 recombinant DEN replicon can
express E6 and/or E7 antigen in cells for an extended time and effectively can stimulate
immunologic reaction to antigen for an extended period.
2 Enhancement of vaccine safety.
a) Recombinant DEN replicon RNAs replicate and are expressed exclusive in the
cytoplasm, and thus, it is difficult for recombination to occur in the somatic cell genome.
b) The recombinant DEN replicon is a recombinant DEN RNA with a structural gene
deletion. That replicon only replicates and expresses in somatic cells and doesn't form
infectious virus particles.
c) The immune system has the ability to recognize and clear recombinant replicon. As a
result, it isn't permanently present in vivo.
3, Little treatment distress.
a) Administration just a few times, reducing patient distress in the therapy process.
b) The composition operates quickly in the host, thereby shortening the course of therapy.
4. Low cost:
a) The packaging cells expressing a DEN structural protein are transfected by a DEN
recombinant replicon to produce VLP and then are transfected by VLP again to produce
substantial quantities of VLP, increasing VLP construction efficiency. That avoids
massive replicon construction, shortens vaccine production, increases vaccine
production efficiency and decreases cost.
b) The constitutive expressing packaging cells without NS3 expression are transfected by
a DEN recombinant replicon to produce VLP. NS3 has a special packaging signal
sequence and a DEN genome with an NS3 deletion can't be packaged into a VLP. So,
packaging cells can't package and form VLP themselves. VLP produced by this
packaging cell contains recombinant DEN replicon only, and there is no need to screen
virus particles for recombinants, thereby enhancing construction efficiency.
The invention now is exemplified in the following representative examples. Clearly, these
examples only clarify and don't limit this invention. The experimental methods taught herein,
many of which are known in the art, can be performed practicing such known methods, such as
those taught in Sambrook et al., Molecular Cloning: A Laboratory Manual (New York, Cold
Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, 1989) or recommended by manufacturers.
Construction of Full-length DEN Virus cDNA Clones
Full-length DEN cDNA clones were constructed by incorporation of full-length DEN cDNA into
plasmid pRS424, wherein said dengue sero-type II (DEN II, NGC) (ATCC#VR-1255) virus and
plasmid pRS424 (ATCC#77105) were obtained from ATCC, Manassas, VA.
a) Three DEN cDNA fragments (31-, 5'- and middle cDNA) were produced by PCR with
DEN RNA as template. 5'-cDNA contains an Xbal restriction site and an Sp6 enhancer
sequence at the 5' end. The 3'-cDNA contains a Sacl restriction site at the 3' end. The
middle cDNA contains sequences identical to the 3' end of the 5'-cDNA and the 5' end of
Sequences of Primers:
The resulting three DEN cDNA fragments are 5484 bp, 2530 bp and 2922 bp, respectively, in
b) The 3' cDNA and the 5' cDNA fragments were ligated into plasmid pRS424 practicing
c) Using known methods of homologous recombination in yeast, the middle cDNA fragment was
inserted into the said clone to produce a full-length DEN cDNA clone, pRS/FLD2.
2. Construction of DEN replicon cDNA clones with structural protein gene sequences deleted
a) Therein said full-length DEN cDNA clone pRS/FLD2 produced in step 1(c) was
linearized by BamHI digestion at position 1696 or 2203 of the DEN cDNA sequence
(GenBank Accession No. AF038403) (There is a BamHI restriction site in DEN genome).
b) A 96 nt DMA fragment was synthesized by fusion PCR containing 45 bases deriving
from codon 6 to codon 20 of the structural protein at the 5' end, 45 bases deriving from
codon 751 to codon 766 of the structural protein at the 3' end and the BamHI restriction
site in the middle The sequence of the DNA is provided as in SEQ ID NO:5.
c) The linearized pRS/FLD2, 96 nt cDNA fragment and activated yeast were put into yeast
transforming buffer(PEG buffer) and incubated at 30°C for one hour, then the linearized
pRS/FLD2 and 96 nt cDNA fragment can be transformed into yeast automatically. After
culture for two days, the transformed yeast colonies can be seen. Based on
homologous recombination in yeast, the 96 nt cDNA fragment can replace structural
protein sequences (SEQ ID NO:4) to produce DEN replicon cDNA clones with structural
protein sequences deleted. Like recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicons produced in
Example 3 below, a DEN RNA replicon without structural protein sequences can be
used to produce DEN RNA replicon virus-like particles (VLP) by at least four different
packaging schemes as provided hereinabove, and will be described in Example 4 animal
Construction of HPV E7-E6-2A DNA Fragment
1. E7-E6 sequence is an HPV oncogene. (Gene Bank Accession No. AF486352; AF469197;
and AF472508) designated as SEQ ID NO:1, which encodes an antigen containing 225 amino
acids (SEQ ID NO:2).
2. Therein said 2A sequence is a mouth-foot-pestilence virus fragment containing sixty bases,
designated as SEQ ID NO:3.
3. E6 and E7 fragments were produced by PCR with plasmid HPV-16 as template, oligos
CA (SEQ ID NO: 12) and TGCAGTTCTCTTTTGGTGCATTGGTTTCTGAGAACAGATGGG
(SEQ ID NO: 13) as one set of primers, oligos ATGCACCAAAAGAGAACTGCA (SEQ ID NO:
14) and AAGGTCAAAATTCAACAGCTGGGTTTCTCTACGTGT (SEQ ID NO: 15) as another
set of primers. The 5' end of the E6 fragment contains the sequence,
ATGCACCAAAAGAGAACTGCA which is identical to the 3' end of the E7 fragment. The 3' end
of the E6 fragment contains the sequence, CAGCTGTTGAATTTTGACCTT which is identical to
the 5' end of the 2A sequence. The 5' end of the E7 fragment contains a sequence identical to
DEN II cDNA nt 108-124. A 111 bp DMA fragment containing the 2A sequence and its 3'end
sequence identical to DEN II cDNA nt 2275-2375 was produced by fusion PCR with oligos
(SEQ ID NO: 3) and
GTTGGAC TCGAC (SEQ ID NO: 16) as primers.
4. Full-length E7-E6-2A cDNA fragment was produced by PCR with the E6 fragment, the E7
fragment and the 111 bp fragment containing the 2A sequence as template, oligos
GTTGGACTCGAC (SEQ ID NO: 18) as primers. The 5' end and 3' end of the construct contains
sequences identical to DEN cDNA gene.
Integration of HPV Genome Into DEN RNA Replicon
1. Full-length DEN cDNA clone (pRS/FLD2) produced in step 1 (c) of Example 1 was linearized
2. The linearized DEN cDNA clone (pRS/FLD2) and HPV E7-E6-2A cDNA fragment were
transformed into yeast together. In the process of yeast DNA replication, the HPV-E7-E6-2A
cDNA fragment can integrate into the DEN cDNA clone automatically and replace the DEN
structural protein sequences (C, M and E coding region sequences) to produce a circular HPVDEN
RNA replicon cDNA clone (pRS/D2-HPV16).
3. The HPV-DEN RNA replicon cDNA clone produced in step 2 was purified with a Qiagen
(Qiagen Inc.) column.
4. The HPV-DEN RNA replicon cDNA clone was transformed into Stab12™ (Invitrogen Inc.,
Carlsbad, CA) and a large number of HPV-DEN RNA replicon cDNA clones were produced by
5. This HPV-DEN RNA replicon cDNA clone was digested by Sacl at the 3' end.
6. The modified HPV-DEN RNA replicon cDNA was transcribed into RNA by DNA dependent
Sp6 RNA polymerase to produce a recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicon.
7. The recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicon was transfected into BHK-21 (ATCC#CCL-10) cells
by electroporation and recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicons replicate and express E7-E6
protein of HPV.
Four Ways of Production of HPV VLP
Method 1: Production of VLP using tetracycline-regulated gene expression system
Summary: Using the tetracycline-regulated gene expression system, BHK-21 cells were
transformed to produce a DEN structural protein regulated expression cell line. The Tet-Off
Gene Expression systems were purchased from Clontech Inc. This plasmid expresses a
regulatory protein named "rtTA" which regulates gene expression and plasmid transcription.
This gene expression system contains pTet-Off regulatory vectors, pTRE2 response vectors
and pTK-Hyg selection vectors.
1. DEN structural protein genes (full 2328 bp DEN structural protein genes designated as SEQ
ID NO:4) were inserted into pTRE2 response vectors of the Tet-Off gene expression system.
Namely the CpreME cDNA fragment was produced by PCR with full-length DEN cDNA clone
(PRS/FLD2) as template, oligos ATATCCCCGCGGATGAATAACCAACGAAAAAAGGCG (SEQ
ID NO: 19) and ATATATCTAGACTAGGCCTGCACCATAACTCCCAA (SEQ ID NO:20) as
primers. The CpreME cDNA fragment and pTRE2 (Clontech Inc.) were digested by Xbal and
Sac II. After Qiagen spin column (Qiagen Inc.) purification, these two fragments were ligated by
T4 ligase (New England Biolab Inc.) and used to transform E. coli to produce recombinant
pTRE2 containing DEN structural protein genes.
2. Transform BHK-21 cells with the pTet-Off regulatory vectors by electroporation and then
BHK-21 Tet-Off cell lines are selected.
1. The Tet-Off gene expression system inserted with the structural protein genes produced in
step 1 was transformed into BHK-21 Tet-Off cells by electroporation to produce a DEN
structural proteins regulated-high expression BHK-21 cell line.
4. The recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicon produced in Example 3 was transformed into said
BHK-21 cell line by eiectroporation. After one day, the Tet-Off gene expression system was
induced for high expression of structural proteins. After ten days, the supernatant was collected
to produce 104 packaged recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicon VLP per ml.
Method 2: Production of HPV recornbinants using Sindbis RNA replicon
1. Production of DEN structural protein fragment:
a) A DNA fragment of a C protein gene was produced by PCR with pRS/FLD2 produced in
Step 1(c) of Example 1 as template, and oligos
CCTCTAGCTAGAGCTTACCATGAATAACCAACGAAAAAAG (SEQ ID NO:21) and
GATTAGAGCTCTTATCTGCGTCTCCTGTTCAAGAT (SEQ ID NO:22) as primers.
b) A DNA fragment of prM-E gene was produced by PCR with pRS/FLD2 produced in Step
1(c) of Example 1 as template, and oligos
GCGCTCTAGAATGACTGCAGGCATGATCATTATG (SEQ ID NO: 23) and
ATGCCAGTAGGACAGGTGTAATCTAGGCCTGCACCATAACTCCCAA (SEQ ID NO:
24) as primers.
c) A DNA fragment of Sindbis 26S was produced by PCR with Sindbis RNA replicon cDNA
(Stratagene Co.) as template, and oligos ATTACACCTGTCCTACTGGCA (SEQ ID
N0:25) and CATGGTAAGCTCTAGCTAGAG (SEQ ID NO:26) as primers.
d) The 3' end of the prM-E DNA fragment and the 5' end of the Sindbis 26S DNA fragment
contain an identical 21 nt DNA sequence. The 3' end of the Sindbis 26S DNA fragment
and the 5' end of the C gene DNA fragment contain an identical 21 nt DNA sequence.
e) The C/preM-E fragment and the Sindbis 26S DNA fragment were fused together by PCR
with the three fragments as templates, and oligos
GCGCTCTAGAATGACTGCAGGCATGATCATTATG (SEQ ID NO:27) and
GTATAGAGCTCTTATCTGCGTCTCCTGTTCAAGAT (SEQ ID NO:28) as primers to
produce DNA fragment preME-26S-C.
2. Production of recombinant Sindbis RNA replicon containing DEN structural protein genes.
a) The PreME-26S-C fragment produced in step 1 and the Sindbis RNA replicon DNA
plasmid (Stratagene Co.) were digested by Xbal and Sacl. After Qiagen spin column
(Qiagen Inc.) purification, these two DNA fragments were ligated by T4 ligase (New
England Biolab Inc.) and used to transform E. coli to produce recombinant Sindbis RNA
replicon cDNA clones containing DEN structural protein genes and then was purified by
Qiagen spin column (QIAGEN Inc.)
b) Recombinant Sindbis RNA replicon cDNA clone produced in step (a) was linearized by
c) Linearized Sindbis RNA replicon cDNA clone was transcribed into RNA by DNA
dependent Sp6 RNA polymerase to produce a recombinant Sindbis RNA replicon
containing DEN structural protein genes.
3. Recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicon produced in Example 3 was transfected into BHK-21
cells. After 24 hours, recombinant Sindbis RNA replicons produced in said step 2(c) were
transfected into the cells again. The two transfections were done by electroporation with a 0.4
cm Gene Pulser Cuvette, 200 V/950 uF. After one or two days, the supernatant was collected
to produce 104-105 recombinant HPV- DEN RNA replicon VLP per ml.
Method 3: Production of particles using Sindbis RNA replicon VLP.
1. Recombinant Sindbis RNA replicons produced in step 2(c) of Method 2 and DH-BB RNA
(Stratagene Inc.) were transfected into BHK-21 cells (ATCC#CCL-10) together by
electroporation. After three to five days, the supernatant was collected to obtain recombinant
Sindbis RNA replicon VLP containing DEN structural protein genes.
2. Recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicon VLPs produced in step 3 of Method 2 were infected
into BHK-21 cells (ATCC#CCL-10). After 24 hours, recombinant Sindbis RNA replicon VLPs
produced in said step 1 were infected into the cells again. After 24 to 48 hours, the supernatant
was collected to obtain 105-106 recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicon VLPs per ml.
Method 4: Production of BHK-21 Packaging Cell line transformed with DEN cDNA
sequence deleted NS3 region
1. A DNA fragment of cytomegalovirus (CMV) containing the immediate-early
enhancer/promoter region was produced by PCR with pCI (Promega Co.) as template, oligos 5'
CMV and 3' CMV as primers. As an early enhancer and promoter, this DNA fragment (SEQ ID
NO:29) of CMV is 631 bp in length. The DNA fragment of the 5' end of DEN cDNA (DEN 5'
end) was produced by PCR with pRS/FLD2 produced in Step 1(c) of Example 1 as template,
and oligos 5' DEN 5' end and 3' DEN 5' end as primers. These two DNA fragments were fused
together by fusion PCR with these two fragments as template, and oligos 5' CMV and 3' DEN 5'
end as primers to produce the DNA fragment, CMV-DEN 5' end (CMV-DEN 5' end).
2. The CMV-DEN 5' end fragment produced in Step 1 and plasmid pRS424(ATCC#77105) were
digested by Kpnl and Apal. After Qiagen spin column (Qiagen Inc.) purification, these two DNA
fragments were ligated by T4 ligase (New England Biolab Inc.) and used to transform E. coli to
produce CMV-DEN 5' end clone(pRS/CMV-DEN 5' end).
3. The DNA fragment of the 3' end of DEN cDNA (DEN 31 end) was produced by PCR with
pRS/FLD2 produced in Step 1(c) of Example 1 as template, and oligo 5' DEN 3' end and 3' DEN
3' end as primers. A DNA fragment of the hepatitis delta virus antigenomic ribozyme (HDVr,
SEQ ID NO:30) was produced by PCR with oligo 5' HDVr and 3' HDVr as primers. A DNA
fragment of bovine growth hormone poly A (BGH pA) was produced by PCR with pcDNAS
(Invitrogen, Co.) as template, and oligo 5' pA and 3' pA as primers. The three DNA fragments
were fused together by fusion PCR with the three fragments as templates, and oligos 5' DEN 3'
end and 3' pA as primers to produce DNA fragment, DEN 3' end-HDVr-pA.
Sequences of primers:
4. Plasmid pRS/CMV-DEN 5' end produced in step 2 and DMA fragment DEN 3' end- HDVr -pA
produced in step 3 were digested by Apal and Sacll. After Qiagen spin column (Qiagen Inc.)
purification, these two DMA fragments were ligated by T4 ligase (New England Biolab Inc.),
transformed into E. coli and selected to produce pRS/CMV-DEN 5' end-DEN 3' end-HDVr-pA
5. Plasmid DNA pRS/CMV-DEN 5' end-DEN 3' end-HDVr-pA produced in step 4 was digested
by Apal and plasmid pRS/FLD2 produced in step 1(c) of Example 1 was digested by Xbal and
Sacl The two digestive products were purified, used to transform yeast and selected to
produce full-length DEN RNA replicon cDNA clone (pRS/CMV/D2) according to homologous
recombination in yeast.
6. Full-length DEN RNA replicon cDNA clone (pRS/CMV/D2) produced in step 5 was digested
by Xhol to produce linearized full-length DEN RNA replicon cDNA clone. A 75 bp DNA
TGGAAAATGTGGAG, SEQ ID NO:43) was produced by PCR with oligos
(SEQ ID NO:41) and CTCCACATTTTCCAAGATTTGGTTGTTCTTAATTCC (SEQ ID NO:42) as
primers. The linearized DEN RNA replicon cDNA clone and 75 bp DNA fragment were used to
transform yeast resulting in a construct where a part of the NS3 gene (nt 5059-6215) was
deleted in the linearized DEN RNA replicon cDNA by homologous recombination in yeast.
7. The NS3- deleted DEN cDNA clone produced in step 6 and pcDNAS (Invitrogen, Inc.) were
transfected into BHK-21 cells (ATCC#CCL-10) together. After culture for one day, these cells
were changed to culture medium containing G418 (Sigma). A stable G418-resistant packaging
cell line was selected by transfection of recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicon produced in
Example 3 into G418-resistant cells. The liter of recombinant HPV-DEN RNA replicon VLP can
Animal experiments of HPV Vaccine
To examine the immunity of a HPV expressing VLP, the HPV VLP was used to determine any
effect on tumor cells using C57BL/6 mice.
C57BL/6 mice were inoculated with JHU-1 HPV cells as the tumor model, JHU-1 HPV cells
contained E6 and E7 oncogenes of HPV. Eight-week-old mice were inoculated in the flank with
500 ul PBS buffer containing 105 JHU-1 HPV cells. JHU-1 HPV cells can completely induce
solid tumors. Seven days after inoculation of JHU-1 HPV cells, tumors could be felt. After
fourteen days, the tumors could reach over 6 mm in diameter.
Rx of HPV VLP: Four groups of eight C57BL/6 mice
PFU = Infectious Particle of HPV replicon-containing VLP
Groups 2 and 3 of eight mice each were inoculated in the flank with 105 JHU-1 HPV cells. After
fourteen days, groups 3 and 4 of eight mice each were inoculated ip with 107 PFU HPV-VLP
and after seven days they were inoculated with 107 PFU HPV-VLP again.
1. To examine immunity of HPV VLP:
a) After inoculation of mice with JHU-1 HPV cells, tumor growth and sizes were examined
every two days.
b) An HPV E6/E7-specific CD8+ T cell assay was used to examine the cells by cytoplasm
staining and flow cytometry. After the second inoculation of group 4 mice with HPVVPL,
spleen cells were separated and used for staining with fluorescence-IFN-K and
TNF-a antibodies. Stained cell surface IFN and TNF can be detected with flow
In group 3, after inoculation of C57BL/6 mice with 105 JHU-HPV for fourteen days, tumors were
induced, as expected. The tumor bumps sometimes were larger than 6 mm in diameter. Then
those mice were inoculated ip with 107 HPV-VPL. After two days it can be seen that most
tumors began to shrink. After first inoculation, after seven days, the mice were inoculated with
107 HPV-VPL again. After two inoculations for one week, tumors in almost half the mice
disappeared. In other mice, the trend was for diminution of tumor size. In group 2, after
inoculation of C57BL/6 mice with 105 JHU-HPV for thirty-five days, tumors of 75% of the mice
were larger than 25mm.
b) The effects of HPV VLP on E6-E7-specific CD8+ T cells
The effects of the HPV VPL on E6-E7-specific CDa+ T cells were examined by cytoplasm
staining. The HPV VPL induced CD8" T cells to secrete IFN-y and TNF-a.
Construction of Different Types of DEN II VPL Vectors
A recombinant DEN II replicon was constructed as in Examples 1, 2 and 3 as described, but the
difference was that the sequence of the 5' end of the C gene and the length of the NS1 signal
peptide were different. VLP were produced as in Example 4 described above.
retained C gene
Construction of DEN I VPL
A recombinant DEN replicon was constructed as in Examples 1, 2 and 3 above, but the
difference is that DEN I replaced DEN II of Examples 1, 2 and 3. Then VLP were produced by
method 4 of Example 4. Four mice of Example 5 with tumors were inoculated as group 3 of
Example 5 described above.
All publications are herein incorporated by reference to the same extent as if each individual
publication was specifically and individually indicated to be incorporated by reference in its
entirety. It will occur to those of ordinary skill in the art that various modifications may be made
to the disclosed embodiments and that such modifications are intended to be within the scope of the present invention, which is defined by the following claims.
1. A recombinant dengue virus (DEN) replicon used as vaccine against
tumor and virus characterized in that there is deletion of preM and
comprising the following nucleotide sequences:
a) a DEN 5' untranslated region (5'-UTR);
b) a nucleic acid encoding at least the first 20 amino acids of the DEN capsid protein;
c) a nucleic acid encoding the signal peptide of the DEN NS1 protein;
d) a nucleic acid encoding DEN non-structural proteins;
e) DEN 3'-untranslated region (3'-UTR); and
f) an exogenous nucleotide sequence of 100-2000 bp, such as a tumor antigen gene, a virus antigen gene or an immunoregulator gene, located between b) and c), which optionally has a 3' release element sequence.
2. The replicon as claimed in claim 1, wherein said release element sequence encodes the autoprotease of foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) or the substrate of signal peptide protease.
3. The replicon as claimed in claim 1, wherein said DEN replicon is obtained from DEN type I, DEN type II, DEN type III, or DEN type IV.
4. A virus-like particle comprising the replicon as claimed in claim 1 and DEN non structural proteins.
5. A method of making a DEN virus-like particle (VLP), comprising the steps of:
a) introducing into a DEN packaging cell line, a DEN recombinant replicon or a VLP containing said replicon as claimed in claim 1;
b) culturing said cell line either to express DEN non structural proteins or introducing into that said cell line, replicons of a helper virus containing DEN structural genes that are expressed; and
c. collecting DEN-VLP containing a DEN recombinant replicon.
6. The method as claimed in claim 5, wherein said packaging cell contains a DEN structural protein expression vector, wherein said vector has deletion of NS3, has a Tet-regulated expression system or both.
7. A recombinant DEN replicon with a deletion of preM substantially as herein described with reference to the foregoing description, examples and the accompanying drawings.
8. A virus-like particle substantially as herein described with reference to the foregoing description, examples and the accompanying drawings.
A method of making a virus-like particle substantially as herein described with reference to the foregoing description, examples and th« accompanying drawings.
|Indian Patent Application Number||3791/DELNP/2005|
|PG Journal Number||13/2009|
|Date of Filing||25-Aug-2005|
|Name of Patentee||SHANGHAI TENGEN BIOMEDICAL CO., LTD.|
|Applicant Address||WEST 5G,318 NORTH CHONGQING ROAD, SHANGHAI 200003, CHINA.|
|PCT International Classification Number||C12N 7/04|
|PCT International Application Number||PCT/CN2004/000088|
|PCT International Filing date||2004-01-30|