Meningococcal sugar as a helper to enhance performance of Group B vaccine candidates

Prevention; University Medical Center, Utrecht.

Scientific version
  • Researchers:
    Dr Jeanette Leusen, Dr Liana Steeghs
  • Start Date:
    01 June 2003
  • Category:
  • Location:
    University Medical Centre, Utrecht, The Netherlands
Meningococcal sugar as a helper to enhance performance of Group B vaccine candidates

Components of the outer layer of Group B meningococcal bacteria provide the basis for several novel Group B vaccine candidates that are in development. Although many of them look promising, there have been some difficulties in getting the vaccines to stimulate a big enough immune response. This has led scientists to consider whether LPS, which provokes a big immune response, could be used to enhance these candidates. However, LPS is poisonous. The researchers have already found a way to alter the structure of LPS, so that it can still produce an immune reaction but is no longer toxic. The altered LPS could potentially be used in new vaccines but to make sure that is done safely and successfully, the researchers must first fully investigate the way in which altered LPS interacts with the different parts of the immune system.

Results from this study have been published in a scientific journal as follows:

Steeghs L, van Vliet SJ, Uronen-Hansson H, van Mourik A, Engering A, Sanchez-Hernandez M, Klein NJ, Callard R, van Putten JP, van der Ley P, van Kooyk Y, van de Winkel JG.
Neisseria meningitidis expressing lgtB lipopolysaccharide targets DC-SIGN and modulates dendritic cell function.
Cell Microbiol 2006 Feb;8(2):316-25.


meningitis & septicaemia can kill in hours!

People who are faced with meningitis and septicaemia have to act fast to help save a life.

Ask the Expert
Professor Chris Tang

Why are MRF continuing to fund MenB research?

Read more