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Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2010;74(3):541-7. Epub 2010 Mar 7.

Binding of Norovirus virus-like particles (VLPs) to human intestinal Caco-2 cells and the suppressive effect of pasteurized bovine colostrum on this VLP binding.

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Department of Applied Molecular Biosciences, Graduate School of Bioagricultural Sciences, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Aichi, Japan.


Noroviruses (NoVs), which cannot be grown in cell culture, are a major infectious agent of gastroenteritis. An in vitro assay system was established for the evaluation of NoV binding to enterocytes using virus-like particles (VLPs) produced in a baculovirus system expressing a NoV VP1 capsid protein. After confirmation of the purity by MS analysis, VLPs were incubated with human intestinal Caco-2 cells. NoV VLPs were detected clearly by confocal laser microscopy only on a certain population of Caco-2 cells, and were semi-quantified by immunoblotting of cell lysates. Then the suppressive effect of pasteurized bovine colostrum was analyzed on the VLP binding to Caco-2 cells by immunoblotting. The colostrum reduced VLP binding in a dose-dependent manner, at about 50% suppression with 12.5 microg of the colostral proteins. Furthermore, the colostrum contained IgG antibodies reacting to VLPs, suggesting that cross-reactive antibodies in the bovine colostrums block human NoV binding to intestinal cells.

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