Edible rabies vaccines have been produced with GM corn. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Induction of a protective immune response to rabies virus in sheep after oral immunization with transgenic maize, expressing the rabies virus glycoprotein.
Vaccine. 2012 Aug 10 ;30(37):5551-6. Epub 2012 Jun 27. PMID: 22749836
Centro Nacional de Investigaciones en Microbiologia Animal (CENID-Microbiologia), INIFAP, Carretera México-Toluca, Km. 15.5, Colonia Palo Alto, CP 05110, México, DF, Mexico. firstname.lastname@example.org
The introduction of exogenous genes into plants permits the development of a new generation of biological products, i.e., edible vaccines. Cereals, especially maize, have been the systems of choice for the expression of antigenic proteins because the proteins can be expressed at high levels in the kernel and stored for prolonged periods without excessive deterioration. The utilization of plant-derived antigens for oral delivery provides an alternative strategy for the control of pathogens in animals compared to the current vaccine administration methods, such as injection. However, there is some doubt about the efficacy of these types of vaccines in polygastric animals due to the features of their digestive system. Here, we report the efficacy of an edible vaccine against rabies evaluated in sheep. Kernels containing different doses of G protein (0.5, 1, 1.5 and 2mg) were given in a single dose by the oral route. Cumulative survival was better in groups that received 2mg of G protein and for the positive control (inactivated rabies vaccine); this observation was supported by the presence of neutralizing antibodies. Animals in the control group died after challenge. The degree of protection achieved for 2mg of G protein was comparable to that conferred by a commercial vaccine. In conclusion, this is the first study in which an orally administered edible vaccine showed efficacy in a polygastric model.