Vaccine Design using Virus-like Particle Platform-based Technologies
Dr. Bryce Chackerian and his laboratory are interested in vaccine development; particularly the use of virus particles as platforms for antigen display. It has long been recognized that highly dense repetitive antigens such as virus particles induce strong immune responses. However, more recent studies from Dr. Chackerian's laboratory has demonstrated that antigens that are normally poorly immunogenic can be made highly immunogenic by displaying them in a multivalent, repetitive format on the surface of virus particles; essentially using viruses as platforms for vaccines. Dr. Chackerian has shown that this ability to enhance immunogenicity does not only apply to epitopes derived from traditional targets, such as pathogens, but also to self-antigens which are normally subject to the mechanisms of B cell tolerance. Using virus-like particles derived from RNA bacteriophage, he has been to develop and implement a system that allows vaccines to be rapidly identified by affinity selection. He also has projects to develop novel vaccines targeting Human Papillomavirus, Chlamydia, Malaria, HIV, Influenza, and high cholesterol.