In this study we constructed a plasmid containing the gene encoding varicella-zoster virus transmembrane glycoprotein gE (VZV gE) and evaluated its utility for DNA immunization in mice. Our initial work demonstrates that intramuscular and subcutaneous injection of VZV gE DNA, without the use of costimulatory molecules or other adjuvant materials, results in the generation of antigen-specific antibodies of primarily the IgG2a subclass, indicating that this vaccine can stimulate Th1 type immunity. This is the first report of a prototype DNA vaccine for varicella-zoster virus.
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