UW Center for AIDS and STD

Project 2: Novel antigen designs and delivery platforms to enhance the protective ability of Tpr-based vaccines for syphilis


This project focuses upon the protective capacity of select members of theĀ Treponema pallidumĀ repeat (Tpr) protein family, TprC/D2, and TprK. A robust immune response to these antigens has been shown to enhance pathogen clearance by opsonophagocytosis and provide significant protection from chancre development at sites of infection. Current studies will optimize vaccine design to include additional protective epitopes of the TprC, TprD2, and TprK proteins. Specifically, this project evaluates the protective capacity of a vaccine cocktail consisting of TprC and TprD2 antigenic variants in combination with the TprK conserved fragment, maps T-cell and B-cell epitopes of TprC and TprD2 to inform the development of alternative platforms for antigen delivery, and engineers and tests the protective capacity of chimeric TprC/TprD2/TprK concatemers and HPV-based viral-like particles.