Immunization of woodchucks with recombinant hepatitis delta antigen does not protect against hepatitis delta virus infection

Authors

  • Dr. Peter Karayiannis,

    Corresponding author
    1. Liver Unit, Department of Medicine, St. Mary's Hospital Medical School, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London, United Kingdom
    • Department of Medicine, St. Mary's Hospital Medical School, South Wharf Road, London W2 1NY, United Kingdom
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  • John Saldanha,

    1. Liver Unit, Department of Medicine, St. Mary's Hospital Medical School, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London, United Kingdom
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  • John Monjardino,

    1. Liver Unit, Department of Medicine, St. Mary's Hospital Medical School, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London, United Kingdom
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  • Robert Goldin,

    1. Liver Unit, Department of Pathology, St. Mary's Hospital Medical School, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London, United Kingdom
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  • Janice Main,

    1. Liver Unit, Department of Medicine, St. Mary's Hospital Medical School, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London, United Kingdom
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  • Shashi Luther,

    1. Liver Unit, Department of Medicine, St. Mary's Hospital Medical School, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London, United Kingdom
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  • Mark Easton,

    1. Liver Unit, Department of Medicine, St. Mary's Hospital Medical School, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London, United Kingdom
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  • Antonio Ponzetto,

    1. Division of Gastroenterology, Ospedale Molinette, Turin, Italy
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  • Howard C. Thomas

    1. Liver Unit, Department of Medicine, St. Mary's Hospital Medical School, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London, United Kingdom
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Abstract

To assess the role of immunization against hepatitis delta antigen in the prevention of hepatitis delta virus infection, woodchuck carriers of woodchuck hepatitis virus were immunized with a 64 amino acid portion of hepatitis delta antigen from its N-terminal region. The protein was expressed in Escherichia coli and contained a major immunogenic epitope. A significant anti-hepatitis delta response was observed that did not, however, protect the animals from hepatitis delta virus superinfection. Unexpectedly, the period of detectable viremia was longer in the immunized than in the control animals. We conclude that immunization with this recombinant hepatitis delta antigen does not afford protection against subsequent hepatitis delta virus exposure. (HEPATOLOGY 1990;12:1125–1128).

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