Herpes simplex virus (HSV) prevention is a global health priority but, despite decades of research, there is no effective vaccine. Prior efforts focused on generating glycoprotein D (gD) neutralizing antibodies, but clinical trial outcomes were disappointing. The deletion of gD yields a single-cycle candidate vaccine (∆gD-2) that elicits high titer polyantigenic non-gD antibodies that exhibit little complement-independent neutralization but mediate antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) and phagocytosis (ADCP). Active or passive immunization with ∆gD-2 completely protects mice from lethal disease and latency following challenge with clinical isolates of either serotype. The current studies evaluated the role of complement in vaccine-elicited protection. The immune serum from the ∆gD-2 vaccinated mice exhibited significantly greater C1q binding compared to the serum from the gD protein vaccinated mice with infected cell lysates from either serotype as capture antigens. The C1q-binding antibodies recognized glycoprotein B. This resulted in significantly greater antibody-mediated complement-dependent cytolysis and neutralization. Notably, complete protection was preserved when the ∆gD-2 immune serum was passively transferred into C1q knockout mice, suggesting that ADCC and ADCP are sufficient in mice. We speculate that the polyfunctional responses elicited by ∆gD-2 may prove more effective in preventing HSV, compared to the more restrictive responses elicited by adjuvanted gD protein vaccines.
- Complement-dependent cytolysis
- Complement-dependent neutralization
- Glycoprotein B
- Glycoprotein D
- Herpes simplex viruses
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases