Vaccination of koalas with a recombinant Chlamydia pecorum major outer membrane protein induces antibodies of different specificity compared to those following a natural live infection

Kollipara, Avinash, Polkinghorne, Adam, Beagley, Kenneth, & Timms, Peter (2013) Vaccination of koalas with a recombinant Chlamydia pecorum major outer membrane protein induces antibodies of different specificity compared to those following a natural live infection. PLoS ONE, 8(9), e74808.

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Abstract

Chlamydial infection in koalas is common across the east coast of Australia and causes significant morbidity, infertility and mortality. An effective vaccine to prevent the adverse consequences of chlamydial infections in koalas (particularly blindness and infertility in females) would provide an important management tool to prevent further population decline of this species. An important step towards developing a vaccine in koalas is to understand the host immune response to chlamydial infection. In this study, we used the Pepscan methodology to identify B cell epitopes across the Major Outer Membrane Protein (MOMP) of four C. pecorum strains/genotypes that are recognized, either following (a) natural live infection or (b) administration of a recombinant MOMP vaccine. Plasma antibodies from the koalas naturally infected with a C. pecorum G genotype strain recognised the epitopes located in the variable domain (VD) four of MOMP G and also VD4 of MOMP H. By comparison, plasma antibodies from an animal infected with a C. pecorum F genotype strain recognised epitopes in VD1, 2 and 4 of MOMP F, but not from other genotype MOMPs. When Chlamydia-free koalas were immunised with recombinant MOMP protein they produced antibodies not only against epitopes in the VDs but also in conserved domains of MOMP. Naturally infected koalas immunised with recombinant MOMP protein also produced antibodies against epitopes in the conserved domains. This work paves the way for further refinement of a MOMP-based Chlamydia vaccine that will offer wide cross-protection against the variety of chlamydial infections circulating in wild koala populations.

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ID Code: 68338
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0074808
ISSN: 1932-6203
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES (060000) > MICROBIOLOGY (060500) > Infectious Agents (060502)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES (060000) > ZOOLOGY (060800) > Animal Immunology (060804)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > IMMUNOLOGY (110700)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Biomedical Sciences
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Funding:
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Kollipara et al.
Copyright Statement: This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits
unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Deposited On: 12 Mar 2014 05:49
Last Modified: 18 Oct 2014 03:26

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