AAV COVID-19 vaccine aims for the sweet spot between antibody and T cell immunity
The rationale behind the only AAV-based vaccine in development for COVID-19
The academic team behind the only AAV vaccine candidate for COVID-19 thinks its vector can get the best of both worlds and induce stronger antibody responses than adenoviral vaccines, while still activating T cells. Moreover, the researchers contend it can avoid viral vectors' Achilles heel: pre-existing immunity.
The dominant focus for COVID-19 vaccine development has been on their ability to generate antibodies against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the disease. Whereas generating antibodies is the domain of B cells, their counterpart role of T cells has received less attention.
Activating T cell immunity brings multiple advantages, including recruiting CD4+ T cells that help B cells develop more potent antibody responses, and CD8+ T cells that kill infected cells directly.
Vectors encoding viral antigens are thought to be among the most efficient at