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Parasite Immunol. 2004 Mar;26(3):119-25.

Monoclonal antibodies against a 62 kDa proteinase of Trichomonas vaginalis decrease parasite cytoadherence to epithelial cells and confer protection in mice.

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Parasitology Department, Pedro Kourí Tropical Medicine Institute, Havana, Cuba.


Trichomonas vaginalis infects the epithelium of the genital tract. The mechanism by which it invades the tissue leading to the disease is not thoroughly understood. However, results of several studies seem to agree that parasite adhesion to epithelium cells is the initial step leading to infection in women. T. vaginalis is associated with high levels of proteolytic activity. The role of some of these proteinases in the development of infection has been demonstrated. The current study establishes the role of a 62 kDa excretion-secretion proteinase in parasite cytoadherence. Monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) against this enzyme were tested for their ability to inhibit this process. Three stable hybrid producers of IgG(1)class MAbs (4D8, 1A8, 3C11) against the 62 kDa proteinase were obtained. Two of them (4D8 and 1A8) showed parasite recognition by immunofluorescence. Parasite cytoadherence to a monolayer of HeLa cells was inhibited by the 4D8, 1A8 and 3C11 antibodies. MAb 4D8 administered 24 h before a challenge with T. vaginalis by the intraperitoneal route was able to protect the majority of mice. Nitric oxide levels in the serum of animals inoculated with MAb 4D8 and challenged with the parasite were significantly different from those recorded in mice treated with an unrelated MAb. These studies show that an appropriate antibody against 62 kDa proteinase can help the host resist a challenge by the intraperitoneal route with T. vaginalis.

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