Rob Noad and Polly Roy
from: Bionanotechnology: Biological Self-assembly and its Applications (Edited by: Bernd H. A. Rehm). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2013)
Virus-like particles (VLPs) are self-assembling nanoparticles that mimic viruses. They have been used as highly immunogenic, safe, vaccines; as carriers for antigen and epitope display, and the delivery of small molecules to cells. Formed from the proteins that normally make up the structure of the virus particle, VLPs often have characteristics that are indistinguishable from the parent virus. In addition, the ability to form VLPs appears to be an intrinsic property of many, if not most, viral structural proteins. Given that viruses are ubiquitous in the environment, the VLP approach offers the potential to match particle characteristics to biotechnological application. This chapter reviews the current state of VLP research with a focus on the diverse applications for which VLPs have been used and the potential for further development of the technology read more ...