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[Molecular genetic characteristics of the B. pertussis strains isolated in different periods of the pertussis epidemic process].

[Article in Russian]


Despite the fact that the mass immunization of the children population with the DPTs vaccine has been carried out in the Russian Federation since 1959, the pertussis infection persists to be one of the pressing problems for the children population. Although the vaccination coverage of the children population with pertussis vaccines is high in Russia, at present time the pertussis incidence rates are increasing among schoolchildren and remain high among infants younger than 12 months old. Many researchers believe that the variability of the genetic structure of the pertussis causative agent may be one of the causes of increasing pertussis incidence rates. This investigation provides the molecular genetic characteristics of 97 B. pertussis strains isolated in pertussis patients in Moscow in different periods of pertussis epidemic process since the 1950s up to present time. It shows the changes in the structures of genes, which are encoding the main protective antigens of the pertussis microbe that are the pertussis toxin (ptxS1) and the pertactin (pm). The structurre of the ptxS1 and pm gene of the B. pertussis vaccine strains was compared with the structures of these genes in the B. pertussis strains isolated from the pertussis patients at present time and also in past years. All B. pertussis strains isolated in the prevaccination period (1948-1959) and most strains (95%) isolated during the first twenty years of the mass immunization in Russia are characterized by the presence of the so called "vaccine" alleles of the pertussis toxin and pertactin genes that are ptxS1 B or ptxS1 D and pm 1 alleles that corresponds to the genetic structure of the vaccine producing strains. In the early 1970s the B. pertussis strains of another toxin and pertactin genetic structures with so-called "non-vaccinal" alleles ptxS1 A and pm 3 (pm 2 since 1980s) began to appear. The B. pertussis strains with "non-vaccinal" alleles have completely displaced the "old" strains. At present time in Moscow the pertussis disease is caused by the B. pertussis strains bearing ptxS1 A and pm 2 or pm 3 alleles of pertussis toxin and pertactin genes. There was no correlation between the genotype and serotype. Thus, the structure of the B. pertussis toxin and pertactin genes in strains which have been isolated since the 1980s up to now differs from the structure of these genes in strains which are used for producing DPTs vaccine. The data obtained in this investigation suggest that the genetic structure specificity of circulating B. pertussis strains that are producing the disease at present time should be used as one of the criteria for selecting vaccine producing strains.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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