The AAPS Journal

, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 380–388 | Cite as

Peptide Amphiphile Micelles Self-Adjuvant Group A Streptococcal Vaccination

  • Amanda Trent
  • Bret D. Ulery
  • Matthew J. Black
  • John C. Barrett
  • Simon Liang
  • Yulia Kostenko
  • Natalie A. David
  • Matthew V. Tirrell
Research Article Theme: Nanoparticles in Vaccine Delivery
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Theme: Nanoparticles in Vaccine Delivery


Delivery system design and adjuvant development are crucially important areas of research for improving vaccines. Peptide amphiphile micelles are a class of biomaterials that have the unique potential to function as both vaccine delivery vehicles and self-adjuvants. In this study, peptide amphiphiles comprised of a group A streptococcus B cell antigen (J8) and a dialkyl hydrophobic moiety (diC16) were synthesized and organized into self-assembled micelles, driven by hydrophobic interactions among the alkyl tails. J8-diC16 formed cylindrical micelles with highly α-helical peptide presented on their surfaces. Both the micelle length and secondary structure were shown to be enhanced by annealing. When injected into mice, J8-diC16 micelles induced a strong IgG1 antibody response that was comparable to soluble J8 peptide supplemented with two classical adjuvants. It was discovered that micelle adjuvanticity requires the antigen be a part of the micelle since separation of J8 and the micelle was insufficient to induce an immune response. Additionally, the diC16 tail appears to be non-immunogenic since it does not stimulate a pathogen recognition receptor whose agonist (Pam3Cys) possesses a very similar chemical structure. The research presented in this paper demonstrates the promise peptide amphiphile micelles have in improving the field of vaccine engineering.


group A streptococcus J8 peptide peptide amphiphile micelles self-adjuvant vaccine 


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Copyright information

© American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amanda Trent
    • 1
  • Bret D. Ulery
    • 2
    • 3
  • Matthew J. Black
    • 4
  • John C. Barrett
    • 3
    • 5
  • Simon Liang
    • 6
  • Yulia Kostenko
    • 7
  • Natalie A. David
    • 6
  • Matthew V. Tirrell
    • 3
  1. 1.Biomolecular Science and Engineering ProgramUniversity of CaliforniaSanta BarbaraUSA
  2. 2.Department of Chemical EngineeringUniversity of MissouriColumbiaUSA
  3. 3.Institute for Molecular EngineeringUniversity of ChicagoChicagoUSA
  4. 4.Department of Chemical EngineeringUniversity of CaliforniaSanta BarbaraUSA
  5. 5.Biophysical Sciences Graduate ProgramUniversity of ChicagoChicagoUSA
  6. 6.Division of Biological SciencesUniversity of ChicagoChicagoUSA
  7. 7.Department of Chemical EngineeringUniversity of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA

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