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FEMS Immunol Med Microbiol. 2009 Mar;55(2):280-91. doi: 10.1111/j.1574-695X.2008.00493.x. Epub 2008 Nov 18.

A Vibrio cholerae ghost-based subunit vaccine induces cross-protective chlamydial immunity that is enhanced by CTA2B, the nontoxic derivative of cholera toxin.

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Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30310, USA.


The Vibrio cholerae ghost (rVCG) platform is an effective carrier and delivery system for designing efficacious Chlamydia vaccines. We investigated whether CTA2B, the nontoxic derivative of cholera toxin, can augment protective immunity conferred by an rVCG-based chlamydial vaccine and enhance cross-protection against heterologous chlamydial strains. An rVCG vaccine coexpressing chlamydial major outer membrane protein and CTA2B was genetically constructed and antigens were targeted to the inner membrane of V. cholerae before ghost production by gene E-mediated lysis. Effective immunomodulation by CTA2B was demonstrated by the ability of the vaccine construct to enhance the activation and maturation of dendritic cells in vitro. Also, C57BL/6 mice immunized via mucosal and systemic routes showed increased specific mucosal and systemic antibody and T-helper type-1 (Th1) responses, irrespective of the route. The enhanced production of IFN-gamma, but not IL-4 by genital mucosal and splenic T cells, indicated a predominantly Th1 response. Clearance of the Chlamydia muridarum vaginal infection was significantly enhanced by codelivery of the vaccine with CTA2B, with the intravaginal route showing a moderate advantage. These results indicate that the rVCG-based vaccine is capable of inducing cross-protection against heterologous chlamydial serovars and that incorporation of mucosal adjuvants, such as CTA2B in the rVCG delivery platform, may enhance protective immunity.

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