Replication-Deficient Particles: New Insights into the Next Generation of Bleutongue Virus Vaccines

Cristina C. Celma, Meredith Stewart, Kerstin Wernike, Michael Eschbaumer, Lorenzo Gonzalez-Molleda, Emmanuel Breard, Claudia Schulz, Bernd Hoffmann, Andy Haegeman, Kris De Clercq, Stephan Zientara, P.A. van Rijn, Martin Beer, Polly Roy*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Bluetongue virus (BTV) is endemic in many parts of the world, often causing severe haemorrhagic disease in livestock. To date, at least 27 different serotypes have been recognized. Vaccination against all serotypes is necessary to protect susceptible animals and to prevent onward spread of the virus by insect vectors. In our previous studies, we generated replication-deficient (DISC) virus strains for a number of serotypes and reported preliminary data on their protective efficacy in animals. In this report, to advance the DISC vaccines to the marketplace, we investigated different parameters of these DISC vaccines. First, we demonstrated the genetic stabilities of these vaccine strains and also the complementing cell line. Subsequently, the optimal storage conditions of vaccines, including additives, temperature and desiccation were determined and their protective efficacies in animals confirmed. Further, to test if mixtures of different vaccine strains could be tolerated, we tested cocktails of DISC vaccines in combinations of three or six different serotypes in sheep and cattle, the two natural hosts of BTV. Groups of sheep vaccinated with a cocktail of six different vaccines were completely protected from challenge with individual virulent serotypes, both in early challenge or after five months' challenge without any clinical disease. There was no interference in protection between the different vaccines. Protection was also achieved in cattle with a mixture of three vaccine strains, albeit at a lesser level than sheep. Our data support and validate the suitability of these virus strains as the next generation vaccines for BTV.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere01892-16
JournalJournal of Virology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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