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Adv Virol. 2011;2011:713769. doi: 10.1155/2011/713769. Epub 2011 Sep 22.

Bacterial Toxin Fusion Proteins Elicit Mucosal Immunity against a Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus Antigen When Administered Intranasally to Guinea Pigs.

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  • 1Department of Animal Science, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269, USA.


Peptides corresponding to the foot-and-mouth disease virus VP1 G-H loop are capable of inducing neutralizing antibodies in some species but are considered relatively poor immunogens, especially at mucosal surfaces. However, intranasal administration of antigens along with the appropriate delivery vehicle/adjuvant has been shown to induce mucosal immune responses, and bacterial enterotoxins have long been known to be effective in this regard. In the current study, two different carrier/adjuvant approaches were used to augment mucosal immunity to the FMDV O(1) BFS G-H loop epitope, in which the G-H loop was genetically coupled to the E. coli LT-B subunit and coexpressed with the LTA2 fragment (LTA2B-GH), or the nontoxic pseudomonas exotoxin A (ntPE) was fused to LTA2B-GH at LT-A2 to enhance receptor targeting. Only guinea pigs that were inoculated intranasally with ntPE-LTA2B-GH and LTA2B-GH induced significant anti-G-H loop IgA antibodies in nasal washes at weeks 4 and 6 when compared to ovalbumin or G-H loop immunized animals. These were also the only groups that exhibited G-H loop-specific antigen-secreting cells in the nasal mucosa. These data demonstrate that fusion of nonreplicating antigens to LTA2B and ntPE-LTA2B has the potential to be used as carriers/adjuvants to induce mucosal immune responses against infectious diseases.

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