Vaccine Design pp 597-619 | Cite as

A Plant-Based Transient Expression System for the Rapid Production of Malaria Vaccine Candidates

  • Alexander Boes
  • Andreas Reimann
  • Richard M. Twyman
  • Rainer Fischer
  • Stefan Schillberg
  • Holger Spiegel
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1404)


There are currently no vaccines that provide sterile immunity against malaria. Various proteins from different stages of the Plasmodium falciparum life cycle have been evaluated as vaccine candidates, but none of them have fulfilled expectations. Therefore, combinations of key antigens from different stages of the parasites life cycle may be essential for the development of efficacious malaria vaccines. Following the identification of promising antigens using bioinformatics, proteomics, and/or immunological approaches, it is necessary to express, purify, and characterize these proteins and explore the potential of fusion constructs combining different antigens or antigen domains before committing to expensive and time-consuming clinical development. Here, using malaria vaccine candidates as an example, we describe how Agrobacterium tumefaciens-based transient expression in plants can be combined with a modular and flexible cloning strategy as a robust and versatile tool for the rapid production of candidate antigens during research and development.


Agrobacterium tumefaciens DsRed Gene stacking Nicotiana benthamiana Modular cloning Recombinant protein production 



We thank Dr. Thomas Rademacher for cloning the pTRAkc vector series. The chimeric antibody 4G2 was kindly provided by Stefan Menzel. The work described in this chapter was partly supported by the Fraunhofer Future Foundation via the malaria vaccine project “Innovative technologies to manufacture ground-breaking biopharmaceutical products in microbes and plants”.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alexander Boes
    • 1
  • Andreas Reimann
    • 1
  • Richard M. Twyman
    • 2
  • Rainer Fischer
    • 1
    • 3
  • Stefan Schillberg
    • 1
  • Holger Spiegel
    • 1
  1. 1.Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IMEAachenGermany
  2. 2.TRM LtdYorkUK
  3. 3.Institute for Molecular BiotechnologyRWTH Aachen UniversityAachenGermany

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