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The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of the route of administration on the immunogenicity and efficacy of a combined western, eastern, and Venezuelan equine encephalitis (WEVEE) virus-like replicon particle (VRP) vaccine in cynomolgus macaques. The vaccine consisted of equal amounts of WEEV, EEEV, and VEEV VRPs. Thirty-three animals were randomly assigned to five treatment or control groups. Animals were vaccinated with two doses of WEVEE VRPs or the control 28 days apart. Blood was collected 28 days following primary vaccination and 21 days following boost vaccination for analysis of the immune response to the WEVEE VRP vaccine. NHPs were challenged by aerosol 28 or 29 days following second vaccination with WEEV CBA87. Vaccination with two doses of WEVEE VRP was immunogenic and resulted in neutralizing antibody responses specific for VEEV, EEEV and WEEV. None of the vaccinated animals met euthanasia criteria following aerosol exposure to WEEV CBA87. However, one NHP control (total of 11 controls) met euthanasia criteria after infection with WEEV CBA87. Statistically significant differences in median fever hours were noted in control NHPs compared to vaccinated NHPs, providing a quantitative measure of infection and efficacy of the vaccine against a WEEV challenge. Alterations in lymphocytes, monocytes, and neutrophils were observed. Lymphopenia was observed in control NHPs.


Crystal W Burke, Rebecca A Erwin-Cohen, Aimee I Goodson, Catherine Wilhelmsen, Jennifer A Edmundson, Charles E White, Pamela J Glass. Efficacy of Western, Eastern, and Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis (WEVEE) Virus-Replicon Particle (VRP) Vaccine against WEEV in a Non-Human Primate Animal Model. Viruses. 2022 Jul 08;14(7)

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PMID: 35891482

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