Human Immunodeficiency Virus type 1 (HIV-1) causes millions of deaths every year, but a protective vaccine remains elusive. A promising vaccine strategy is to use virus-like particles (VLPs) for HIV-1. To this end, HIV-1 VLPs were produced in Nicotiana benthamiana plants that were stably expressing the HIV-1 Gag protein and transiently expressing a truncated form of gp41. These VLPs were tested to determine their inherent adjuvant effects due to their production in plants in order to dissect the previously observed stimulating activity of these VLPs in a prime-boost vaccine approach.
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