Virus-like Particle & Nano-Particle Vaccines

27-29 June 2023, University of Latvia, Riga, Latvia

Virus-like particles are supra-molecular assemblages incorporating key immunologic features of viruses which include repetitive surfaces, particulate structures with potential for induction of innate immunity through activation of pathogen-associated molecular-pattern recognition receptors.

They carry no replicative genetic information and can be produced in heterologous expression systems at large scale. Virus-like particles thus represent a safe and effective vaccine platform with potential to induce potent B- and T-cell responses.

In addition to being effective vaccines against the corresponding viruses from which they are derived, virus-like particles can also be used to present foreign epitopes to the immune system. This can be achieved by genetic fusion or chemical conjugation. This technological innovation has greatly broadened the scope of their use, from immunizing against microbial pathogens to immunotherapy for chronic diseases.

Towards this end, virus-like particles have been used to induce auto-antibodies to disease-associated self-molecules involved in chronic diseases, such as hypertension and Alzheimer’s disease. The recognition of the potent immunogenicity and commercial potential for virus-like particles has greatly accelerated research and development activities. During the last decade, two prophylactic virus-like particle vaccines have been registered for human use, while another 12 vaccines entered clinical development.

VLPNPV 2023 is the sixth meeting in this new series, the first being held in Cannes in 2012, for international researchers working on Virus-Like Particles (VLPs) the multiprotein structures that mimic the organization and conformation of authentic native viruses but lack the viral genome, and Nano-Particles potentially yielding safer and cheaper vaccine candidates.

A small number of prophylactic VLP-based vaccines are currently commercialized worldwide: GlaxoSmithKline’s Engerix (hepatitis B virus) and Cervarix (human papillomavirus), and Merck and Co., Inc.’s Recombivax HB (hepatitis B virus) and Gardasil (human papillomavirus) are some examples. Other VLP-based vaccine candidates are in clinical trials or undergoing preclinical evaluation, such as influenza virus, parvovirus, Norwalk and various chimeric VLPs. Many others are still restricted to small-scale fundamental research, despite their success in preclinical tests.

This meeting will focus on the essential role of VLP technology in new-generation vaccines against prevalent and emergent diseases. The implications of large-scale VLP production will be important for process control, monitorization and optimization. VLP-based and NP-based vaccines updates will be presented with the latest results from clinical trials and the recent developments in chimeric VLP-based technology for either therapeutic or prophylactic vaccination.

VLPNPV 2023 will be of interest to researchers/contributors from academic programmes, industrial, governmental and regulatory groups. Abstracts for possible oral and/or poster presentation are invited by the VLPNPV 2023 Scientific Advisory Panel – please see the participation page for abstract submission details.

Scientific Advisory Panel

Conference Scope