Characterization of Lipid-Based Hexosomes as Versatile Vaccine Carriers

Subunit vaccines typically show insufficient immunogenicity. To address this issue, we developed a novel self-adjuvanting particulate carrier system based upon the lipids phytantriol (Phy) and mannide monooleate (MaMo). Phy is a lipid known to form nonlamellar phases in fully hydrated systems, whereas MaMo has been found to promote immune responses in emulsion form. A bulk phase composition of Phy/MaMo (14 wt %) showed hexagonal (HII) phase behavior over a practical temperature range (including room and body temperature), and was therefore used for particle development. Hexosomes stabilized with different concentrations of either poloxamer 407, Myrj 59, or Pluronic F108 were successfully prepared. To demonstrate the versatile nature of these systems, the particles were further modified with either positively or negatively charged lipids and loaded with model antigens, while maintaining the HII structure. These hexosomes are structurally robust and amenable to customization, rendering them suitable as antigen delivery carriers.