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This article has been peer reviewed. It is the author’s final published version in Nature Communications, Volume 9, Issue 1, December 2018, Article number 4223.

The published version is available at Copyright © Abreu-Mota et al.


Lassa fever (LF), caused by Lassa virus (LASV), is a viral hemorrhagic fever for which no approved vaccine or potent antiviral treatment is available. LF is a WHO priority disease and, together with rabies, a major health burden in West Africa. Here we present the development and characterization of an inactivated recombinant LASV and rabies vaccine candidate (LASSARAB) that expresses a codon-optimized LASV glycoprotein (coGPC) and is adjuvanted by a TLR-4 agonist (GLA-SE). LASSARAB elicits lasting humoral response against LASV and RABV in both mouse and guinea pig models, and it protects both guinea pigs and mice against LF. We also demonstrate a previously unexplored role for non-neutralizing LASV GPC-specific antibodies as a major mechanism of protection by LASSARAB against LF through antibody-dependent cellular functions. Overall, these findings demonstrate an effective inactivated LF vaccine and elucidate a novel humoral correlate of protection for LF.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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