The teratogenic potential of Zika virus (ZIKV) has made the development of an effective vaccine a global health priority. Here, we generate two gorilla adenovirus-based ZIKV vaccines that encode for pre-membrane (prM) and envelope (E) proteins (GAd-Zvp) or prM and the ectodomain of E protein (GAd-Eecto). Both vaccines induce humoral and cell-mediated immune responses and prevent lethality after ZIKV challenge in mice. Protection is antibody dependent, CD8+ T cell independent, and for GAd-Eecto requires the complement component C1q. Immunization of GAd-Zvp induces antibodies against a key neutralizing epitope on domain III of E protein and confers durable protection as evidenced by memory B and long-lived plasma cell responses and challenge studies 9 months later. In two models of ZIKV infection during pregnancy, GAd-Zvp prevents maternal-to-fetal transmission. The gorilla adenovirus-based vaccine platform encoding full-length prM and E genes is a promising candidate for preventing congenital ZIKV syndrome and possibly infection by other flaviviruses.
- Zika virus
- adaptive immunity