Improved storage of influenza HA-VLPs using a trehalose-glycerol natural deep eutectic solvent system

Ricardo Correia, Liane Meneses, Carolina Richheimer, Paula M. Alves, Manuel J.T. Carrondo, Ana Rita C. Duarte, Alexandre Paiva, António Roldão

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Vaccines are typically stored under refrigerated conditions (2–8 °C) to limit potency and efficacy loss. Maintaining the cold chain is costly and prone to vaccine wastage due to unexpected changes in the storage conditions. The development of formulations conferring enhanced stability can extend vaccine shelf-life and facilitate storage under non-refrigerated conditions, thus simplifying the distribution process and reducing vaccine wastage. In this study, the suitability of a natural deep eutectic system (NADES) consisting of trehalose and glycerol (TGly) for storage of influenza hemagglutinin (HA)-displaying virus-like particles (VLPs) was successfully demonstrated. TGly was efficient in maintaining the activity and physical integrity of HA-VLPs for up to 4 h at 50 °C (accelerated stability study), with half-life values ≈ 20–34 h for the best TGly formulations. Importantly, improved storage is achieved at increasingly higher TGly concentrations, hence confirming the importance of TGly content in its protective capacity. In addition, HA-VLPs were stable in TGly for over one month at room temperature (short-term stability study), with no impact on HA titer or particle size distribution. This work highlights the potential of NADES to improve stability of VLP-based vaccines, showing promising protective capacity under non-refrigerated conditions and short-term thermal stress, and thus having a notable impact on vaccine's cold chain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3279-3286
Number of pages8
Issue number24
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jun 2021


  • Glycerol
  • Improved storage
  • Influenza HA-VLPs
  • Natural deep eutectic solvents
  • Trehalose


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