Advancements in the Growth and Construction of Recombinant Lumpy Skin Disease Virus (LSDV) for Use as a Vaccine Vector

Attenuated vaccine strains of lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV) have become increasingly popular as recombinant vaccine vectors, to target both LSDV, as well as other pathogens, including human infectious agents. Historically, these vaccine strains and recombinants were generated in primary (lamb) testis (LT) cells, Madin–Darby bovine kidney (MDBK) cells or in eggs. Growth in eggs is a laborious process, the use of primary cells has the potential to introduce pathogens and MDBK cells are known to harbor bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV). In this study, data is presented to show the growth of an attenuated LSDV strain in baby hamster kidney (BHK-21) cells. Subsequently, a recombinant LSDV vaccine was generated in BHK-21 cells. Partial growth was also observed in rabbit kidney cells (RK13), but only when the vaccinia virus host range gene K1L was expressed. Despite the limited growth, the expression of K1L was enough to serve as a positive selection marker for the generation of recombinant LSDV vaccines in RK13 cells. The simplification of generating (recombinant) LSDV vaccines shown here should increase the interest for this platform for future livestock vaccine development and, with BHK-21 cells approved for current good manufacturing practice, this can be expanded to human vaccines as well.