Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Matching of symmetry at interfaces is a fundamental obstacle in molecular assembly. Virus-like particles (VLPs) are important vaccine platforms against pathogenic threats, including Covid-19. However, symmetry mismatch can prohibit vaccine nanoassembly. We established an approach for coupling VLPs to diverse antigen symmetries. SpyCatcher003 enabled efficient VLP conjugation and extreme thermal resilience. Many people had pre-existing antibodies to SpyTag:SpyCatcher but less to the 003 variants. We coupled the computer-designed VLP not only to monomers (SARS-CoV-2) but also to cyclic dimers (Newcastle disease, Lyme disease), trimers (influenza hemagglutinins), and tetramers (influenza neuraminidases). Even an antigen with dihedral symmetry could be displayed. For the global challenge of influenza, SpyTag-mediated display of trimer and tetramer antigens strongly induced neutralizing antibodies. SpyCatcher003 conjugation enables nanodisplay of diverse symmetries towards generation of potent vaccines.

Original publication




Journal article


Angew Chem Int Ed Engl

Publication Date





321 - 330


SpyTag, bioconjugation, nanoparticle, nanotechnology, vaccines, Antibodies, Neutralizing, Antibodies, Viral, Antigens, Viral, COVID-19 Vaccines, Freezing, Humans, Models, Molecular, Nanostructures, Vaccines, Virus-Like Particle