Induction of the Common Mucosal Immune System
Work with Streptococcus mutans vaccine toward the prevention of dental caries is an approach that might apply to any type of vaccine. The cell wall of S. mutans has the usual types of streptococcal cell wall antigens. After isolation of these antigens, their oral administration induces a very poor response of the secretory IgA immune system. Living antigens are better, and some non-living particulate antigens induce a good IgA response A conventional approach to vaccine development would be to make the purified antigens particulate. For dental caries, this is being done by constructing multilamilar liposomes, placing the purified antigen in the liposome and using an adjuvant such as lipophilic muramyl dipeptide (MDP). The material is placed into the stomach by intubation (of mice or rats). Induction of immunity through the common mucosal immune system can be assessed in several ways.