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Tuberculosis Research and Treatment
Volume 2011, Article ID 835410, 9 pages
Review Article

Lactoferrin Augmentation of the BCG Vaccine Leads to Increased Pulmonary Integrity

1Department of Pathology, University of Texas Medical School at Houston, 6431 Fannin, Houston, TX 77030, USA
2Department of Integrative Biology and Pharmacology, University of Texas Medical School at Houston, 6431 Fannin, Houston, TX 77030, USA
3Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Texas Medical School at Houston, MSB 2.214 6431 Fannin, Houston, TX 77030, USA

Received 1 November 2010; Revised 19 January 2011; Accepted 1 March 2011

Academic Editor: Carlo Garzelli

Copyright © 2011 Shen-An Hwang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The goal of vaccination to prevent tuberculosis disease (TB) is to offer long-term protection to the individual and the community. In addition, the success of any protective TB vaccine should include the ability to limit cavitary formation and disease progression. The current BCG vaccine protects against disseminated TB disease in children by promoting development of antigenic-specific responses. However, its efficacy is limited in preventing postprimary pulmonary disease in adults that is responsible for the majority of disease and transmission. This paper illustrates the use of lactoferrin as an adjuvant to boost efficacy of the BCG vaccine to control organism growth and limit severe manifestation of pulmonary disease. This resulting limitation in pathology may ultimately, limit spread of bacilli and subsequent transmission of organisms between individuals. The current literature is reviewed, and data is presented to support molecular mechanisms underlying lactoferrin's utility as an adjuvant for the BCG vaccine.