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Plasmodium vivax is the world's most widely distributed human malaria parasite, with over 2.8 billion people at risk in Asia, the Americas, and Africa. The 80-90% new P. vivax malaria infections are due to relapses which suggest that a vaccine with high efficacy against relapses by prevention of hypnozoite formation could lead to a significant reduction in the prevalence of P. vivax infections. Here, we describe the development of new recombinant ChAdOx1 and MVA vectors expressing P. cynomolgi Thrombospondin Related Adhesive Protein (PcTRAP) and the circumsporozoite protein (PcCSP). Both were shown to be immunogenic in mice prior to their assessment in rhesus macaques. We confirmed good vaccine-induced humoral and cellular responses after prime-boost vaccination in rhesus macaques prior to sporozoite challenge. Results indicate that there were no significant differences between mock-control and vaccinated animals after challenge, in terms of protective efficacy measured as the time taken to 1st patency, or as number of relapses. This suggests that under the conditions tested, the vaccination with PcTRAP and PcCSP using ChAdOx1 or MVA vaccine platforms do not protect against pre-erythrocytic malaria or relapses despite good immunogenicity induced by the viral-vectored vaccines.

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The Jenner Institute, University of Oxford, Old Road Campus Research Building, Roosevelt Drive, Oxford OX3 7DQ, UK.