The VP2 structural protein of parvovirus can produce virus-like particles (VLPs) by a self-assembly process in vitro, making VLPs attractive vaccine candidates. In this study, the VP2 protein of canine parvovirus (CPV) was expressed using a baculovirus expression system and assembled into parvovirus-like particles in insect cells and pupae. Electron micrographs of VLPs showed that they were very similar in size and morphology when compared to the wild-type parvovirus. The immunogenicity of the VLPs was investigated in mice and dogs. Mice immunized intramuscularly with purified VLPs, in the absence of an adjuvant, elicited CD4+ and CD8+ T cell responses and were able to elicit a neutralizing antibody response against CPV, while the oral administration of raw homogenates containing VLPs to the dogs resulted in a systemic immune response and long-lasting immunity. These results demonstrate that the CPV-VLPs stimulate both cellular and humoral immune responses, and so CPV-VLPs may be a promising candidate vaccine for the prevention of CPV-associated disease. Copyright: © 2014 Feng et al.
Feng, H., Hu, G. Q., Wang, H. L., Liang, M., Liang, H., Guo, H., … Xia, X. Z. (2014). Canine parvovirus VP2 protein expressed in silkworm pupae self-assembles into virus-like particles with high immunogenicity. PLoS ONE, 9(1). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0079575