Transcutaneous immunization via dissolving microneedles protects mice from lethal influenza H7N9 virus challenge

Siqi Liu, Guozhong Yang, Minghui Li, Fang Sun, Yufeng Li, Xiliang Wang, Yunhua Gao*, Penghui Yang

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    4 Citations (Scopus)
    67 Downloads (Pure)

    Abstract

    Avian influenza H7N9 virus has first emerged in 2013 and since then has spread in China in five seasonal waves. In humans, influenza H7N9 virus infection is associated with a high fatality rate; thus, an effective vaccine for this virus is needed. In the present study, we evaluated the usefulness of dissolving microneedles (MNs) loaded with influenza H7N9 vaccine in terms of the dissolution time, insertion capacity, insertion depth, and structural integrity of H7N9 virus in vitro. Our in vitro results showed MNs dissolved within 6 mins. The depth of skin penetration was 270 µm. After coating with a matrix material solution, the H7N9 proteins were agglomerated. We detected the H7N9 delivery time and humoral immune response in vivo. In a mouse model, the antigen retention time was longer for MNs than for intramuscular (IM) injection. The humoral response showed that similar to IM administration, MN administration increased the levels of functional and systematic antibodies and protection against the live influenza A/Anhui/01/2013 virus (Ah01/H7N9). The protection level was determined by the analysis of pathological sections of infected lungs. MN and IM administration yielded results superior to those in the control group. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that the use of dissolving MNs to deliver influenza H7N9 vaccines is a promising immunization approach.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)6767-6775
    Number of pages9
    JournalVaccine
    Volume40
    Issue number47
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 8-Nov-2022

    Keywords

    • Dissolving microneedles
    • Influenza H7N9 virus
    • Intramuscular injection
    • Transcutaneous immunization
    • Virus challenge

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