Indexed on: 15 Feb '94Published on: 15 Feb '94Published in: Virology
The potential for antibody-dependent enhancement of replication of macrophage/monocyte tropic viruses has posed a significant problem in the development of vaccines for several animal and human viruses and has raised significant concern in the design of potential AIDS vaccines. Using the previously described equine infectious anemia virus/Shetland pony system as a model for HIV-1 vaccine development, we have evaluated the efficacy of a recombinant subunit vaccine containing a baculovirus-expressed envelope surface glycoprotein (gp90) of EIAV. The results of these trials demonstrate not only that the recombinant vaccine failed to protect against infection by standard homologous and heterologous EIAV challenge strains, but that it resulted in a marked enhancement of virus replication and exacerbation of disease in immunized ponies exposed to the heterologous virus strain. Thus, the recombinant EIAV gp90 vaccine provides a novel in vivo model for examining in detail the mechanisms of immune enhancement of a lentivirus infection and for evaluating strategies to avoid the production of deleterious immune responses in AIDS vaccine design.