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Title: Identification of cross-protective antigens to develop a vaccine against intestinal pathogenic E. coli strains : special target to enterohemorrhagic E. coli
Issue Date: 6-Feb-2018
Publisher: Università degli studi Roma Tre
Abstract: Enterohemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC) are a major cause of large outbreaks mainly affecting developed countries. From 1982 to 2002, a total of 350 E. coli O157 outbreaks were reported in the United States. EHEC infection causes diarrheal disease often associated with clinical complications like hemorrhagic colitis and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). Although efforts focused on hygiene have been implemented in the food supply chain to reduce the risk of the foodborne E. coli O157 infection, outbreaks caused by this pathogen are still common. In addition, antibiotic-based therapy is discouraged for their potential undesirable effect in releasing shiga-toxin from the bacteria. Among non-antibiotic preventing strategies, vaccine development is warranted, still nowadays a licensed vaccine specific for human use against EHEC is not available. In this study, we used the Reverse Vaccinology approach applied on the EHEC O157:H7 genome to select new potential vaccine candidates. We identified a panel of 24 of potential protein antigens and we successfully expressed three of them in Generalized Modules for Membrane Antigens (GMMA) delivery system. GMMA expressing these vaccine candidates resulted to be immunogenic, raising a specific antibody response for two of the selected antigens. In particular, immunization with MC001 candidate was able to reduce intestinal EHEC O157:H7 colonization lowering the bacterial count in feces, colon and ceacum tissues in mice. This candidate was found to be homologue to the Salmonella Typhimurium Lipid A deacylase enzyme (LpxR) and to our knowledge this study was the first report describing it as vaccine candidate. Also, gene distribution and sequence variability analysis showed that MC001 was mainly present and conserved in EHEC O157:H7 and in some EPEC. Given the high genetic variability among and within these pathotypes, the identification and inclusion of this conserved candidate in a vaccine might cover against major intestinal pathogenic strains. Furthermore, because it has been showed that during the infection process some autotransporters, as MC021 can be reactive, we also analysed molecular determinant with an important role for their proper secretion and folding, namely the autochaperon (AC) domain. It appeared the AC is a common feature of autotransporters but strictly associated with passenger domains exhibiting a b–helix fold. Their exposition at the bacterial cell the surface further positions the AC as a potential antigenic target and/or development of new treatments. These findings further provide new research directions for the development of non-antibiotic preventive strategy against InPEC in human but also animal.
Access Rights: info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess
Appears in Collections:Dipartimento di Scienze
T - Tesi di dottorato

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