Genetic Basis of Attenuation of Cold-Adapted Influenza Strain B/Leningrad/14/17/55 - Backup Master Donor Virus for Influenza Type B Live Attenuated Vaccines

E V Krutikova, E A Stepanova, P F Wong, I V Kiseleva, E P Grigor'eva, L G Rudenko
Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine 2020 April 4
The reassortant vaccine strain of live attenuated influenza vaccine inherits temperature sensitivity and areactogenicity from cold-adapted attenuated master donor virus. In Russia, B/ USSR/60/69 master donor virus (B60) is currently in use for the preparation of live attenuated type B influenza vaccine candidates. Trivalent live attenuated influenza vaccine based on A/ Leningrad/134/17/57 and B60 are licensed for the use in Russia for single dose vaccination of adults and children over 3 years. B/Leningrad/14/17/55 (B14) cold-adapted virus is a backup master donor virus for live attenuated type B influenza vaccine. According to our preliminary estimates, it is more attenuated than B60, which can allow expanding applicability of this vaccine for children under 3 years of age. In this paper, the role of B14 genes in its attenuation was assessed. Representative collection of reassortants of B14 with epidemic influenza B viruses was obtained, a phenotypic analysis of reassortants was performed, and their pathogenicity for animals was assessed. The leading role of PB2 and PA genes in attenuation of B14 master donor virus was proven.

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