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Clin Immunol. 2013 Jul;148(1):35-43. doi: 10.1016/j.clim.2013.03.009. Epub 2013 Mar 26.

Shigella antigen-specific B memory cells are associated with decreased disease severity in subjects challenged with wild-type Shigella flexneri 2a.

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Center for Vaccine Development, Department of Pediatrics, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA.


The role of Shigella-specific B memory (BM) in protection has not been evaluated in human challenge studies. We utilized cryopreserved pre- and post-challenge peripheral blood mononuclear cells and sera from wild-type Shigella flexneri 2a (wt-2457T) challenges. Challenged volunteers were either naïve or subjects who had previously ingested wt-2457T or been immunized with hybrid Escherichia coli-Shigella live oral candidate vaccine (EcSf2a-2). BM and antibody titers were measured against lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and recombinant invasion plasmid antigen B (IpaB); results were correlated with disease severity following challenge. Pre-challenge IgA IpaB-BM and post-challenge IgA LPS-BM in the previously exposed subjects negatively correlated with disease severity upon challenge. Similar results were observed with pre-challenge IgG anti-LPS and anti-IpaB titers in vaccinated volunteers. Inverse correlations between magnitude of pre-challenge IgG antibodies to LPS and IpaB, as well as IgA IpaB-BM and post-challenge IgA LPS-BM with disease severity suggest a role for antigen-specific BM in protection.

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