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Open AccessArticle

Recombinant Marek’s Disease Virus as a Vector-Based Vaccine against Avian Leukosis Virus Subgroup J in Chicken

Avian Immunosuppressive Diseases Division, State Key Laboratory of Veterinary Biotechnology, Harbin Veterinary Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Harbin 150069, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Academic Editor: Curt Hagedorn
Viruses 2016, 8(11), 301; https://doi.org/10.3390/v8110301
Received: 17 July 2016 / Revised: 18 October 2016 / Accepted: 26 October 2016 / Published: 4 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Section Antivirals & Vaccines)
Avian leukosis virus subgroup J (ALV-J) is an immunosuppressive virus that causes considerable economic losses to the chicken industry in China. However, there is currently no effective vaccine to prevent ALV-J infection. In order to reduce the losses caused by ALV-J, we constructed two effective ALV-J vaccines by inserting the ALV-J (strain JL093-1) env or gag+env genes into the US2 gene of the Marek’s disease herpesviruses (MDV) by transfection of overlapping fosmid DNAs, creating two recombinant MDVs, rMDV/ALV-gag+env and rMDV/ALV-env. Analysis of cultured chicken embryo fibroblasts infected with the rMDVs revealed that Env and Gag were successfully expressed and that there was no difference in growth kinetics in cells infected with rMDVs compared with that of cells infected with the parent MDV. Chickens vaccinated with either rMDV revealed that positive serum antibodies were induced. Both rMDVs also effectively reduced the rate of positive viremia in chicken flocks challenged with ALV-J. The protective effect provided by rMDV/ALV-env inoculation was slightly stronger than that provided by rMDV/ALV-gag+env. This represents the first study where a potential rMDV vaccine, expressing ALV-J antigenic genes, has been shown to be effective in the prevention of ALV-J. Our study also opens new avenues for the control of MDV and ALV-J co-infection. View Full-Text
Keywords: avian leukosis virus subgroup J; recombinant Marek’s disease virus; vaccine; chicken avian leukosis virus subgroup J; recombinant Marek’s disease virus; vaccine; chicken
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Liu, Y.; Li, K.; Gao, Y.; Gao, L.; Zhong, L.; Zhang, Y.; Liu, C.; Zhang, Y.; Wang, X. Recombinant Marek’s Disease Virus as a Vector-Based Vaccine against Avian Leukosis Virus Subgroup J in Chicken. Viruses 2016, 8, 301.

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