Project Description

Safety and immunogenicity of a plant-derived rotavirus-like particle vaccine in adults, toddlers and infants.

Kurokawa N, Robinson MK, Bernard C, Kawaguchi Y, Koujin Y, Koen A, Madhi S, Polasek TM, McNeal M, Dargis M, Couture MM, Trépanier S, Forrest BD, Tsutsui N.

Vaccine. 2021 Sep 15;39(39):5513-5523. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2021.08.052. Epub 2021 Aug 25.


This study is the first clinical trial for a parenteral non-replicating rotavirus vaccine developed using virus-like particle (VLP) technology.


This open-labeled, randomized, placebo-controlled trial was conducted in two parts: Part A (a first-in-human study in Australian adults) and Part B (ascending dose and descending age in South African adults, toddlers and infants). In Part A, two cohorts of 10 adults were assigned to receive a single intramuscular injection of 1 of 2 escalating dose levels of the rotavirus VLP (Ro-VLP) vaccine (7 μg or 21 μg) or placebo. In Part B, one cohort of 10 adults was assigned to receive a single injection of the Ro-VLP vaccine (21 μg) or placebo, two cohorts of 10 toddlers were assigned to receive 2 injections of 1 of 2 escalating dose levels of the Ro-VLP vaccine (7 μg or 21 μg) or placebo 28 days apart, and three cohorts of 20 infants were assigned to receive 3 injections of 1 of 3 escalating dose levels of the Ro-VLP vaccine (2.5 μg, 7 μg or 21 μg) or placebo or 2 doses of oral Rotarix 28 days apart. Safety, reactogenicity and immunogenicity were assessed.


There were no safety or tolerability concerns after administration of the Ro-VLP vaccine. The Ro-VLP vaccine induced an anti-G1P[8] IgG response in infants 4 weeks after the second and third doses. Neutralizing antibody responses against homologous G1P[8] rotavirus were higher in all Ro-VLP infant groups than in the placebo group 4 weeks after the third dose. No heterotypic immunity was elicited by the Ro-VLP vaccine.


The Ro-VLP vaccine was well tolerated and induced a homotypic immune response in infants, suggesting that this technology platform is a favorable approach for a parenteral non-replicating rotavirus vaccine.

Clinical Trial Registration: NCT03507738.
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