Virus-like particle vaccines and adjuvants: The HPV paradigm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Complex antigen structures currently represent the most-studied approach for prophylactic as well as therapeutic vaccines. Different types of complex vaccines, including virus-like particles and virosomes, have been developed depending on the nature of the viral pathogen they are trying to replicate (enveloped vs naked) or the modality to express antigenic epitopes (i.e., the binding of envelope protein on liposomic structures). The complex structure of these vaccines provides them with some adjuvanted properties, not uniformly present for all virus-like particle types. The further inclusion of specific adjuvants in vaccine preparations can modify the presentation modality of such particles to the immune system with a specific Th1 versus Th2 polarization efficacy. A paradigm of the relevance of these new adjuvants are the immunological results obtained with the inclusion of monophosphoryl lipid A adjuvant in the formulation of L1-based human papillomavirus-naked virus-like particles to reduce a Th1 cellular immunity impairment, peculiar for alum-derived adjuvants, along with the induction of highly enhanced humoral and memory B-cellular immunity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1379-1388
Number of pages10
JournalExpert Review of Vaccines
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2009


  • Adjuvant
  • HPV vaccine
  • Th1/th2 polarization
  • Virus-like particle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Pharmacology
  • Molecular Medicine


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