Vaccine research

We are using several approaches for vaccine research and development. One is focusing on the employment of distinct artificial molecules derived from pathogen-associated molecular patterns, in particular Toll-like receptor ligands. These are selected based on their activity to stimulate critical cells of the innate and adaptive immune system of pigs, cattle and sheep. We are particularly interested in targeting DCs and B cells, to enhance both the desired T cells and antibody memory development. Vaccine platforms are currently developed for foot-and-mouth disease virus, mycoplasma hyopneumoniae and Japanese encephalitis virus. In collaboration with the groups of Nicolas Ruggli and Gert Zimmer at the IVI, we are utilizing virus replicon particles representing safe and efficacious vaccine platforms. These platforms are based on classical swine fever virus or vesicular stomatitis virus, and are employed for influenza virus and porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus. In collaboration with Pierre Charneau and Philippe Desprès from the Institute Pasteur in Paris we have developed a lentivirus-based vector vaccine for Japanese encephalitis virus, which can be employed in pigs.  

Funding:

  • Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office, Grant 1.13.05. Towards enhancing the longevity of vaccine-induced immunity against foot-and-mouth disease virus.
  • European Commission 7th Framework Programme. Preparedness, Prediction and Prevention of Emerging Zoonotic Viruses with Pandemic Potential using Multidisciplinary Approaches (PREDEMICS).
  • European Commission Horizon 2020. Strengthening Animal Production and Health through the Immune Response (SAPHIR).