Date of Completion
Vaccines, Nanotechnology, Malaria, Influenza
Mazhar I. Khan
Field of Study
Structural Biology and Biophysics
Doctor of Philosophy
Nanotechnology and nanoparticles are one type of vaccine delivery system. Potentially, the most exciting nanoparticle for vaccine development is our Self-Assembling Protein Nanoparticles (SAPNs). Based off of coiled-coil oligomerization domains, SAPNs self-assemble into particles that are about the size and shape of small icosahedral viruses. Studies have demonstrated that SAPNs are effective vaccine candidates, inducing immune responses as well as protection for malaria, toxoplasmosis, influenza, and SARS. While effective, one missing component for SAPNs is the presence of an immunopotentiator. We have sought to resolve this problem by generating Self-Adjuvanted SAPNs. These SAPNs contain a small concentration of flagellin, a PAMP, known activate both the innate and adaptive immune systems. Self-Adjuvanted SAPNs closely mimic the benefits of both whole organism vaccines as well as subunit vaccines. They contain a high concentration of antigens and immunostimilatory molecules in a fixed unit like a whole organism, while being specifically targeted to only optimal vaccine targets.
Karch, Christopher P., "Development of Self-Adjuvanted Self-Assembling Protein Nanoparticles for Use as Vaccine Candidates" (2015). Doctoral Dissertations. 953.
Available for download on Thursday, December 18, 2025