Tailoring the Avian Host Immune Response for Enhanced Vaccine Production
Andrew G. D. Bean, Tamara J. Gough, Kerri Bruce, Luis F. Malaver-Ortega, Edwina M. McDonald, Christopher Cowled, Cameron R. Stewart, Daniel S. Layton, Kirsten R. Morris, Arjun Challagulla, Terry G. Wise, Terri E. O'Neil, Kristie A. Jenkins and Timothy J. Doran.
CSIRO Health & Biosecurity, at the Australian Animal Health Laboratory, Geelong, Victoria, Australia.
Influenza is an acute viral infection that occurs worldwide and is easily spread with a high cost to society. Vaccination is the only sustainable defence to protect those at risk, however, producing enough doses of vaccine in a cost-effective manner can be challenging. Additionally, vaccine manufacturers face considerable burdens, such as increasing demand and speed of supply, especially in record high infection seasons. The ability to produce vaccine is determined by the speed at which a seed virus can be put into production and the yield of vaccine virus that can be obtained by growth in eggs. Therefore, increasing the output of vaccine virus from eggs addresses a critical issue in supply of product and increased vaccine supply would be predicted to impact significantly on morbidity and mortality. Influenza vaccines are grown in fertilised eggs and although these eggs are necessary they can, however, inhibit vaccine virus growth. It has been known for some time that influenza virus has an intrinsic sensitivity to the antiviral actions of cytokines, particularly the interferons. When vaccine strains are grown within eggs, the immune response of the developing chicken has the potential to produce a variety of immune molecules that may have a significant impact on the yield of virus. Our solution is an innovative way to improve the efficiency of this long-standing egg vaccine production process. This involves the development of a specific line of chickens that produce eggs which produce eggs that grow high-yields of vaccine to improve the efficiency of production. A more efficient manufacturing process will lower costs, increase volume and improve the ability to respond to influenza outbreaks. The application of this technology will enhance the capacity to respond to disease outbreaks and will help to protect the world from the next pandemic.