Nucleoprotein vaccine induces cross-protective cytotoxic T lymphocytes against both lineages of influenza B virus

So Young Lee, Jung Ok Kang, Jun Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Purpose: The influenza B virus diverges into two antigenically distinct lineages: B/Yamagata and B/Victoria. Influenza B is the dominant circulating virus during some influenza seasons, and recent data demonstrated that influenza A and B infection similarly cause severe clinical symptoms in hospitalized patients. Nucleoprotein (NP) is a good target for a universal influenza vaccine. This study investigated whether NP epitope variation within two lineages affects the dominant cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) responses induced by vaccination and the resultant protective immunity. Materials and Methods: The NP of B/Yamagata/16/1988, the representative strain of the Yamagata lineage, includes a dominant CTL epitope, FSPIRITFL, while B/Shangdong/7/1997 from the Victoria lineage has one amino acid difference in this sequence, FSPIRVTFL. Two recombinant replication-deficient adenovirus (rAd)-vectored vaccines expressing either NP were prepared (rAd/B-NP(I) and rAd/B-NP(V), respectively) and administered to BALB/c mice intranasally. To examine the efficacy of vaccination, antibody responses, CTL responses, and morbidity/mortality after challenge were measured. Results: Both vaccines induce similar antibody and CD8 T-cell responses cross-reacting to both epitopes, and also confer cross-protection against both lineages regardless of amino acid difference. Conclusion: The rAd-vectored vaccine expressing the NP could be developed as universal influenza B vaccine which provides broader protection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)54-63
Number of pages10
JournalClinical and Experimental Vaccine Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Korean Vaccine Society.


  • Cross protective immunity
  • Cytotoxic T lymphocytes
  • Epitope
  • Influenza B virus
  • Nucleoproteins
  • Recombinant adenovirus


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