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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2013 Oct 25;440(3):437-42. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2013.09.088. Epub 2013 Sep 26.

An Eimeria vaccine candidate based on Eimeria tenella immune mapped protein 1 and the TLR-5 agonist Salmonella typhimurium FliC flagellin.

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National Animal Protozoa Laboratory and College of Veterinary Medicine, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193, China.


Immune mapped protein-1 (IMP1) is a new protective protein in apicomplexan parasites, and exits in Eimeria tenella. But its structure and immunogenicity in E. tenella are still unknown. In this study, IMPI in E. tenella was predicted to be a membrane protein. To evaluate immunogenicity of IMPI in E. tenella, a chimeric subunit vaccine consisting of E. tenella IMP1 (EtIMP1) and a molecular adjuvant (a truncated flagellin, FliC) was constructed and over-expressed in Escherichia coli and its efficacy against E. tenella infection was evaluated. Three-week-old AA broiler chickens were vaccinated with the recombinant EtIMP1-truncated FliC without adjuvant or EtIMP1 with Freund's Complete Adjuvant. Immunization of chickens with the recombinant EtIMP1-truncated FliC fusion protein resulted in stronger cellular immune responses than immunization with only recombinant EtIMP1 with adjuvant. The clinical effect of the EtIMP1-truncated FliC without adjuvant was also greater than that of the EtIMP1 with adjuvant, which was evidenced by the differences between the two groups in body weight gain, oocyst output and caecal lesions of E. tenella-challenged chickens. The results suggested that the EtIMP1-flagellin fusion protein can be used as an effective immunogen in the development of subunit vaccines against Eimeria infection. This is the first demonstration of antigen-specific protective immunity against avian coccidiosis using a recombinant flagellin as an apicomplexan parasite vaccine adjuvant in chickens.


Eimeria tenella; Flagellin; Immune mapped protein1; Vaccine

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