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Production of virus like particles (VLP) of Mayaro virus by P. pastoris and Baculovirus expression systems

Grant number: 14/50133-0
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: April 01, 2014 - March 31, 2016
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Genetics
Convênio/Acordo: CNRS
Principal Investigator:Soraia Attie Calil Jorge
Grantee:Soraia Attie Calil Jorge
Principal researcher abroad: Renaud Wagner
Institution abroad: Université de Strasbourg, France
Host Institution: Instituto Butantan. Secretaria da Saúde (São Paulo - Estado). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:13/18610-0 - Gene expression of Mayaro virus glycoproteins using baculovirus system, AP.R


The Mayaro virus (MAYV) is responsible for an endemic fever disease in Amazonia rain forest and near localities. The disease is transmitted by mosquito bite, in general of Hemagogous genus. The spread of the disease to urban centers has a moderate risk, as virus was shown to be adapted to the infection of and transmission by Aedes albopictus mosquitos, an important dengue vector. The MAYV infection causes strong arthralgia that lasts for months, in general incapacitating the patient during this period. Virus like particles (VLPs) are the most promising vaccine tools against viral diseases nowadays. The recent approval of VLP-based HPV vaccine opened the field for new vaccines based on this antigen presenting mechanism. VLPs are of most interest because of their properties of maintaining the antigen conformational epitopes by structural similarity with native virus particles. The natural VLP formation is a property presented by some viruses. There is a strong evidence that MAYV proteins can as well form VLPs by its expression in eukaryotic cells. Antigens of a very similar virus, called Chikungunya virus, were expressed as VLPs when obtained by lentivirus based expression system. This project joints the know-how of two traditional research groups in the areas of recombinant protein expression in P. pastoris and insect cells, which have been working together for many years in different projects involving virus antigens. The main objective is to obtain MAYV VLPs from P. pastoris and baculovirus-insect cell expression systems. (AU)

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