Poster on a preclinical immunotoxicity study on immunotoxic effects of the TherVacB vaccine in liver tissue

TherVacB Vaccine: MIKAIA Used in Preclinical Immunotoxicity Study

The TherVacB project, led by Helmholtz Zentrum München, received a five-year funding within the Horizon 2020 program. With TherVacB, a therapeutic vaccine to cure Hepatitis B, the project’s aim is to provide a novel and affordable curative treatment for chronic hepatitis B patients:

The mission of TherVacB is to overcome HBV-specific immune tolerance and to restore antiviral B-cell and T-cell responses by therapeutic vaccination to finally cure HBV.

In September 2023, results from a preclinical immunotoxicity study were presented by the project consortium at the 20th European Congress of Toxicologic Pathology (ESTP23) in Basel, Switzerland. Here is the presented poster: Pathohistological evaluation to exclude immunotoxic effects of the TherVacB vaccine in liver tissue – Results from an immunotoxicity GLP study using a transgenic AAV-HBV mouse model.

ESTP23 Poster

Poster "Pathohistological evaluation to exclude immunotoxic effects of the TherVacB vaccine in liver tissue"
ESTP23 poster, “Pathohistological evaluation to exclude immunotoxic effects of the
TherVacB vaccine in liver tissue”, © Fraunhofer IZI


A. Hoffmann1, S. Riemschneider1, K. Klose1, O. Antoniadou1, V. Bruns³, M. Kreuz1, A. Kosinska², F. Thiele², M. Wiegand², U. Protzer², and J. Lehmann1

  • 1 Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology (IZI)
    Leipzig, Perlickstraße 1, 04103 Leipzig
  • ² Institute of Virology, Technical University of Munich, Helmholtz-Zentrum München
    Munich, Trogerstraße 30, 81675 München, Germany
  • ³ Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits (IIS)
    Erlangen, Am Wolfsmantel 33, 91058 Erlangen, Germany

Batch T-cell quantification with MIKAIA

The digital dataset comprised close to 300 whole-slide images (WSI):

  • ~100 WSIs each for quantification of CD3+, CD4+ and CD8a+ T cells
  • 2 liver sections per scan
  • Zeiss CZI format, 40x objective, scanned with Zeiss AxioScan
  • 2.5 TB image data in total

The MIKAIA IHC Cell Detection App was used to detect the liver tissue and number of DAB+ cells. The absolute amount and cells/mm² cell density was stated separately per liver section (2 per scan), utilizing the scan region extracted from the Zeiss CZI format. The analysis was performed in three batch jobs – one per marker. Each batch took ~2 hours to compute. The result is a folder each, that contains

  • per slide:
    • MIKAIA annotation overlay file (*.ano)
    • shortcuts to the analyzed files
    • low-resolution (~3000x3000px) PNGs with and without burnt-in markup
    • CSV with quantitative outputs (area in µm² per tissue, # contained DAB+ cells)
  • summary CSV file containing all rows from individual per-slide CSV files
  • *.cfg file with used MIKAIA App configuration parameters (loadable into MIKAIA)
  • *.micbat MIKAIA batch-analysis file for repeating the batch-analysis on demand

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Volker Bruns

Volker is a digital pathology and spatial biology enthusiast with a computer science background. Volker and his team develop commercial image analysis software for digital pathology and offer contract development, as well as image analysis as a service in the life sciences.

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Dr. Volker Bruns
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Medical Image Analysis (MIA)
Digital Health and Analytics | Fraunhofer IIS