ResearchPad - immune-serum https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Potency and breadth of human primary ZIKV immune sera shows that Zika viruses cluster antigenically as a single serotype]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_7747 The recent emergence of Zika virus as an important human pathogen has raised questions about the durability and breadth of Zika virus immunity following natural infection in humans. While global epidemic patterns suggest that Zika infection elicits a protective immune response that is likely to offer long-term protection against repeat infection by other Zika viruses, only one study to date has formally examined the ability of human Zika immune sera to neutralize different Zika viruses. That study was limited because it evaluated human immune sera no more than 13 weeks after Zika virus infection and tested a relatively small number of Zika viruses. In this study, we examine twelve human Zika immune sera as far as 3 years after infection and test the sera against a total of eleven Zika virus isolates. Our results confirm the earlier study and epidemic patterns that suggest Zika virus exists in nature as a single serotype, and infection with one Zika virus can be expected to elicit protective immunity against repeat infection by any Zika virus for years to decades after the first infection.

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<![CDATA[Split green fluorescent protein as a tool to study infection with a plant pathogen, Cauliflower mosaic virus]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c897773d5eed0c4847d2d2c

The split GFP technique is based on the auto-assembly of GFP when two polypeptides–GFP1-10 (residues 1–214; the detector) and GFP11 (residues 215–230; the tag)–both non-fluorescing on their own, associate spontaneously to form a fluorescent molecule. We evaluated this technique for its efficacy in contributing to the characterization of Cauliflower mosaic virus (CaMV) infection. A recombinant CaMV with GFP11 fused to the viral protein P6 (a key player in CaMV infection and major constituent of viral factory inclusions that arise during infection) was constructed and used to inoculate transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana expressing GFP1-10. The mutant virus (CaMV11P6) was infectious, aphid-transmissible and the insertion was stable over many passages. Symptoms on infected plants were delayed and milder. Viral protein accumulation, especially of recombinant 11P6, was greatly decreased, impeding its detection early in infection. Nonetheless, spread of infection from the inoculated leaf to other leaves was followed by whole plant imaging. Infected cells displayed in real time confocal laser scanning microscopy fluorescence in wild type-looking virus factories. Thus, it allowed for the first time to track a CaMV protein in vivo in the context of an authentic infection. 11P6 was immunoprecipitated with anti-GFP nanobodies, presenting a new application for the split GFP system in protein-protein interaction assays and proteomics. Taken together, split GFP can be an attractive alternative to using the entire GFP for protein tagging.

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<![CDATA[Protective immunity by an engineered DNA vaccine for Mayaro virus]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c65dce4d5eed0c484dec4a2

Mayaro virus (MAYV) of the genus alphavirus is a mosquito-transmitted emerging infectious disease that causes an acute febrile illness, rash, headaches, and nausea that may turn into incapacitating, persistent arthralgias in some victims. Since its discovery in Trinidad in 1954, cases of MAYV infection have largely been confined there and to the northern countries of South America, but recently, MAYV cases have been reported in some island nations in the Caribbean Sea. Accompanying these reports is evidence that new vectors, including Aedes spp. mosquitos, recently implicated in the global spread of Zika and chikungunya viruses, are competent for MAYV transmission, which, if true, could facilitate the spread of MAYV beyond its current range. Despite its status as an emerging virus, there are no licensed vaccines to prevent MAYV infection nor therapeutics to treat it. Here, we describe the development and testing of a novel DNA vaccine, scMAYV-E, that encodes a synthetically-designed consensus MAYV envelope sequence. In vivo electroporation-enhanced immunization of mice with this vaccine induced potent humoral responses including neutralizing antibodies as well as robust T-cell responses to multiple epitopes in the MAYV envelope. Importantly, these scMAYV-E-induced immune responses protected susceptible mice from morbidity and mortality following a MAYV challenge.

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<![CDATA[Ribonuclease H1-targeted R-loops in surface antigen gene expression sites can direct trypanosome immune evasion]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c1c0ab6d5eed0c484426932

Switching of the Variant Surface Glycoprotein (VSG) in Trypanosoma brucei provides a crucial host immune evasion strategy that is catalysed both by transcription and recombination reactions, each operating within specialised telomeric VSG expression sites (ES). VSG switching is likely triggered by events focused on the single actively transcribed ES, from a repertoire of around 15, but the nature of such events is unclear. Here we show that RNA-DNA hybrids, called R-loops, form preferentially within sequences termed the 70 bp repeats in the actively transcribed ES, but spread throughout the active and inactive ES, in the absence of RNase H1, which degrades R-loops. Loss of RNase H1 also leads to increased levels of VSG coat switching and replication-associated genome damage, some of which accumulates within the active ES. This work indicates VSG ES architecture elicits R-loop formation, and that these RNA-DNA hybrids connect T. brucei immune evasion by transcription and recombination.

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<![CDATA[Characterization of Mycoplasma gallisepticum pyruvate dehydrogenase alpha and beta subunits and their roles in cytoadherence]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c1813bad5eed0c484775ac6

Mycoplasma gallisepticum is a causative agent of chronic respiratory disease in chickens, typically causing great economic losses. Cytoadherence is the critical stage for mycoplasma infection, and the associated proteins are important for mycoplasma pathogenesis. Many glycolytic enzymes are localized on the cell surface and can bind the extracellular matrix of host cells. In this study, the M. gallisepticum pyruvate dehydrogenase E1 alpha subunit (PDHA) and beta subunit (PDHB) were expressed in Escherichia coli, and their enzymatic activities were identified based on 2,6-dichlorophenol indophenol reduction. When recombinant PDHA (rPDHA) and recombinant PDHB (rPDHB) were mixed at a 1:1 molar ratio, they exhibited strong enzymatic activity. Alone, rPDHA and rPDHB exhibited no or weak enzymatic activity. Further experiments indicated that both PDHA and PDHB were surface-exposed immunogenic proteins of M. gallisepticum. Bactericidal assays showed that the mouse anti-rPDHA and anti-rPDHB sera killed 48.0% and 75.1% of mycoplasmas respectively. A combination of rPDHA and rPDHB antisera had a mean bactericidal rate of 65.2%, indicating that rPDHA and rPDHB were protective antigens, and combining the two sera did not interfere with bactericidal activity. Indirect immunofluorescence and surface display assays showed that both PDHA and PDHB adhered to DF-1 chicken embryo fibroblast cells and adherence was significantly inhibited by antisera against PDHA and PDHB. Adherence inhibition of M. gallisepticum to DF-1 chicken embryo fibroblast cells was 30.2% for mouse anti-rPDHA serum, 45.1% for mouse anti-rPDHB serum and 72.5% for a combination of rPDHA and rPDHB antisera, suggesting that rPDHA and rPDHB antisera may have synergistically interfered with M. gallisepticum cytoadherence. Plasminogen (Plg)-binding assays further demonstrated that both PDHA and PDHB were Plg-binding proteins, which may have contributed to bacterial colonization. Our results clarified the enzymatic activity of M. gallisepticum PDHA and PDHB and demonstrated these compounds as Plg-binding proteins involved in cytoadherence.

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<![CDATA[Characterization of Haartman Institute snake virus-1 (HISV-1) and HISV-like viruses—The representatives of genus Hartmanivirus, family Arenaviridae]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5bf5cc38d5eed0c484a81c09

The family Arenaviridae comprises three genera, Mammarenavirus, Reptarenavirus and the most recently added Hartmanivirus. Arenaviruses have a bisegmented genome with ambisense coding strategy. For mammarenaviruses and reptarenaviruses the L segment encodes the Z protein (ZP) and the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase, and the S segment encodes the glycoprotein precursor and the nucleoprotein. Herein we report the full length genome and characterization of Haartman Institute snake virus-1 (HISV-1), the putative type species of hartmaniviruses. The L segment of HISV-1 lacks an open-reading frame for ZP, and our analysis of purified HISV-1 particles by SDS-PAGE and electron microscopy further support the lack of ZP. Since we originally identified HISV-1 in co-infection with a reptarenavirus, one could hypothesize that co-infecting reptarenavirus provides the ZP to complement HISV-1. However, we observed that co-infection does not markedly affect the amount of hartmanivirus or reptarenavirus RNA released from infected cells in vitro, indicating that HISV-1 does not benefit from reptarenavirus ZP. Furthermore, we succeeded in generating a pure HISV-1 isolate showing the virus to replicate without ZP. Immunofluorescence and ultrastructural studies demonstrate that, unlike reptarenaviruses, HISV-1 does not produce the intracellular inclusion bodies typical for the reptarenavirus-induced boid inclusion body disease (BIBD). While we observed HISV-1 to be slightly cytopathic for cultured boid cells, the histological and immunohistological investigation of HISV-positive snakes showed no evidence of a pathological effect. The histological analyses also revealed that hartmaniviruses, unlike reptarenaviruses, have a limited tissue tropism. By nucleic acid sequencing, de novo genome assembly, and phylogenetic analyses we identified additional four hartmanivirus species. Finally, we screened 71 individuals from a collection of snakes with BIBD by RT-PCR and found 44 to carry hartmaniviruses. These findings suggest that harmaniviruses are common in captive snake populations, but their relevance and pathogenic potential needs yet to be revealed.

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<![CDATA[Discovery of a dual protease mechanism that promotes DNA damage checkpoint recovery]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b4a2865463d7e4513b897e6

The DNA damage response is a signaling pathway found throughout biology. In many bacteria the DNA damage checkpoint is enforced by inducing expression of a small, membrane bound inhibitor that delays cell division providing time to repair damaged chromosomes. How cells promote checkpoint recovery after sensing successful repair is unknown. By using a high-throughput, forward genetic screen, we identified two unrelated proteases, YlbL and CtpA, that promote DNA damage checkpoint recovery in Bacillus subtilis. Deletion of both proteases leads to accumulation of the checkpoint protein YneA. We show that DNA damage sensitivity and increased cell elongation in protease mutants depends on yneA. Further, expression of YneA in protease mutants was sufficient to inhibit cell proliferation. Finally, we show that both proteases interact with YneA and that one of the two proteases, CtpA, directly cleaves YneA in vitro. With these results, we report the mechanism for DNA damage checkpoint recovery in bacteria that use membrane bound cell division inhibitors.

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<![CDATA[VGF Protein and Its C-Terminal Derived Peptides in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: Human and Animal Model Studies]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da89ab0ee8fa60b9d296

VGF mRNA is widely expressed in areas of the nervous system known to degenerate in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), including cerebral cortex, brainstem and spinal cord. Despite certain VGF alterations are reported in animal models, little information is available with respect to the ALS patients. We addressed VGF peptide changes in fibroblast cell cultures and in plasma obtained from ALS patients, in parallel with spinal cord and plasma samples from the G93A-SOD1 mouse model. Antisera specific for the C-terminal end of the human and mouse VGF proteins, respectively, were used in immunohistochemistry and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), while gel chromatography and HPLC/ESI-MS/MS were used to identify the VGF peptides present. Immunoreactive VGF C-terminus peptides were reduced in both fibroblast and plasma samples from ALS patients in an advanced stage of the disease. In the G93A-SOD1 mice, the same VGF peptides were also decreased in plasma in the late-symptomatic stage, while showing an earlier down-regulation in the spinal cord. In immunohistochemistry, a large number of gray matter structures were VGF C-terminus immunoreactive in control mice (including nerve terminals, axons and a few perikarya identified as motoneurons), with a striking reduction already in the pre-symptomatic stage. Through gel chromatography and spectrometry analysis, we identified one form likely to be the VGF precursor as well as peptides containing the NAPP- sequence in all tissues studied, while in the mice and fibroblasts, we revealed also AQEE- and TLQP- peptides. Taken together, selective VGF fragment depletion may participate in disease onset and/or progression of ALS.

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<![CDATA[Dissecting the human serum antibody response to secondary dengue virus infections]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5cab0ee8fa60be0171

Dengue viruses (DENVs) are mosquito-borne flaviviruses and the causative agents of dengue fever and dengue hemorrhagic fever. As there are four serotypes of DENV (DENV1-4), people can be infected multiple times, each time with a new serotype. Primary infections stimulate antibodies that mainly neutralize the serotype of infection (type-specific), whereas secondary infections stimulate responses that cross-neutralize 2 or more serotypes. Previous studies have demonstrated that neutralizing antibodies induced by primary infections recognize tertiary and quaternary structure epitopes on the viral envelope (E) protein that are unique to each serotype. The goal of the current study was to determine the properties of neutralizing antibodies induced after secondary infection with a different (heterotypic) DENV serotypes. We evaluated whether polyclonal neutralizing antibody responses after secondary infections consist of distinct populations of type-specific antibodies to each serotype encountered or a new population of broadly cross-neutralizing antibodies. We observed two types of responses: in some individuals exposed to secondary infections, DENV neutralization was dominated by cross-reactive antibodies, whereas in other individuals both type-specific and cross-reactive antibodies contributed to neutralization. To better understand the origins of type-specific and cross-reactive neutralizing antibodies, we analyzed sera from individuals with well-documented sequential infections with two DENV serotypes only. These individuals had both type-specific and cross-reactive neutralizing antibodies to the 2 serotypes responsible for infection and only cross-reactive neutralizing antibodies to other serotypes. Collectively, the results demonstrate that the quality of neutralizing (and presumably protective) antibodies are different in individuals depending on the number of previous exposures to different DENV serotypes. We propose a model in which low affinity, cross-reactive antibody secreting B-cell clones induced by primary exposure evolve during each secondary infection to secrete higher affinity and more broadly neutralizing antibodies.

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<![CDATA[Piscirickettsia salmonis Imbalances the Innate Immune Response to Succeed in a Productive Infection in a Salmonid Cell Line Model]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da9cab0ee8fa60ba3ffb

Piscirickettsia salmonis is a facultative intracellular bacterium that causes the disease called “salmon rickettsial syndrome”. Attempts to control this disease have been unsuccessful, because existing vaccines have not achieved the expected effectiveness and the antibiotics used fail to completely eradicate the pathogen. This is in part the product of lack of scientific information that still lacks on the mechanisms used by this bacterium to overcome infected–cell responses and survive to induce a productive infection in macrophages. For that, this work was focused in determining if P. salmonis is able to modify the expression and the imbalance of IL-12 and IL-10 using an in vitro model. Additionally, we also evaluated the role the antimicrobial peptide hepcidin had in the control of this pathogen in infected cells. Therefore, the expression of IL-10 and IL-12 was evaluated at earlier stages of infection in the RTS11 cell line derived from Oncorhynchus mykiss macrophages. Simultaneously, the hepcidin expression and location was analyzed in the macrophages infected with the pathogen. Our results suggest that IL-10 is clearly induced at early stages of infection with values peaking at 36 hours post infection. Furthermore, infective P. salmonis downregulates the expression of antimicrobial peptide hepcidin and vesicles containing this peptide were unable to merge with the infective bacteria. Our results suggest that P. salmonis is able to manipulate the behavior of host cytokines and likely might constitute a virulence mechanism that promotes intracellular bacterial replication in leukocytes cells lines of trout and salmon. This mechanism involves the generation of an optimum environment for the microorganism and the downregulation of antimicrobial effectors like hepcidin.

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<![CDATA[A novel flow cytometry-based assay for the quantification of antibody-dependent pneumococcal agglutination]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db50ab0ee8fa60bdbee6

The respiratory pathogen Streptococcus pneumoniae is a major cause of diseases such as otitis media, pneumonia, sepsis and meningitis. The first step towards infection is colonization of the nasopharynx. Recently, it was shown that agglutinating antibodies play an important role in the prevention of mucosal colonization with S. pneumoniae. Here, we present a novel method to quantify antibody-dependent pneumococcal agglutination in a high-throughput manner using flow cytometry. We found that the concentration of agglutinating antibodies against pneumococcal capsule are directly correlated with changes in the size and complexity of bacterial aggregates, as measured by flow cytometry and confirmed by light microscopy. Using the increase in size, we determined the agglutination index. The cutoff value was set by measuring a series of non-agglutinating antibodies. With this method, we show that not only anti-polysaccharide capsule antibodies are able to induce agglutination but that also anti-PspA protein antibodies have agglutinating capabilities. In conclusion, we have described and validated a novel method to quantify pneumococcal agglutination, which can be used to screen sera from murine or human vaccination studies, in a high-throughput manner.

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<![CDATA[Identification of Low- and High-Impact Hemagglutinin Amino Acid Substitutions That Drive Antigenic Drift of Influenza A(H1N1) Viruses]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daccab0ee8fa60bb49d8

Determining phenotype from genetic data is a fundamental challenge. Identification of emerging antigenic variants among circulating influenza viruses is critical to the vaccine virus selection process, with vaccine effectiveness maximized when constituents are antigenically similar to circulating viruses. Hemagglutination inhibition (HI) assay data are commonly used to assess influenza antigenicity. Here, sequence and 3-D structural information of hemagglutinin (HA) glycoproteins were analyzed together with corresponding HI assay data for former seasonal influenza A(H1N1) virus isolates (1997–2009) and reference viruses. The models developed identify and quantify the impact of eighteen amino acid substitutions on the antigenicity of HA, two of which were responsible for major transitions in antigenic phenotype. We used reverse genetics to demonstrate the causal effect on antigenicity for a subset of these substitutions. Information on the impact of substitutions allowed us to predict antigenic phenotypes of emerging viruses directly from HA gene sequence data and accuracy was doubled by including all substitutions causing antigenic changes over a model incorporating only the substitutions with the largest impact. The ability to quantify the phenotypic impact of specific amino acid substitutions should help refine emerging techniques that predict the evolution of virus populations from one year to the next, leading to stronger theoretical foundations for selection of candidate vaccine viruses. These techniques have great potential to be extended to other antigenically variable pathogens.

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<![CDATA[Dopamine- and Tyrosine Hydroxylase-Immunoreactive Neurons in the Brain of the American Cockroach, Periplaneta americana]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9fdab0ee8fa60b72b66

The catecholamine dopamine plays several vital roles in the central nervous system of many species, but its neural mechanisms remain elusive. Detailed neuroanatomical characterization of dopamine neurons is a prerequisite for elucidating dopamine’s actions in the brain. In the present study, we investigated the distribution of dopaminergic neurons in the brain of the American cockroach, Periplaneta americana, using two antisera: 1) an antiserum against dopamine, and 2) an antiserum against tyrosine hydroxylase (TH, an enzyme required for dopamine synthesis), and identified about 250 putatively dopaminergic neurons. The patterns of dopamine- and TH-immunoreactive neurons were strikingly similar, suggesting that both antisera recognize the same sets of “dopaminergic” neurons. The dopamine and TH antibodies intensively or moderately immunolabeled prominent brain neuropils, e.g. the mushroom body (memory center), antennal lobe (first-order olfactory center) and central complex (motor coordination center). All subdivisions of the mushroom body exhibit both dopamine and TH immunoreactivity. Comparison of immunolabeled neurons with those filled by dye injection revealed that a group of immunolabeled neurons with cell bodies near the calyx projects into a distal region of the vertical lobe, which is a plausible site for olfactory memory formation in insects. In the antennal lobe, ordinary glomeruli as well as macroglomeruli exhibit both dopamine and TH immunoreactivity. It is noteworthy that the dopamine antiserum labeled tiny granular structures inside the glomeruli whereas the TH antiserum labeled processes in the marginal regions of the glomeruli, suggesting a different origin. In the central complex, all subdivisions excluding part of the noduli and protocerebral bridge exhibit both dopamine and TH immunoreactivity. These anatomical findings will accelerate our understanding of dopaminergic systems, specifically in neural circuits underlying aversive memory formation and arousal, in insects.

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<![CDATA[Tissue Distribution of Porcine FTO and Its Effect on Porcine Intramuscular Preadipocytes Proliferation and Differentiation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da19ab0ee8fa60b7c37f

The fat mass and obesity associated (FTO) gene plays an important role in adipogenesis. However, its function during porcine intramuscular preadipocyte proliferation and differentiation remains poorly understood. In this study, we prepared the antiserum against porcine FTO (pFTO), which was used to determine its subcellular localization and tissue distribution. Our data indicated that pFTO was localized predominantly in the nucleus. Real-time quantitative PCR and western blot analysis showed that pFTO was highly expressed in the lung and subcutaneous adipose tissue. Overexpression of pFTO in porcine intramuscular preadipocytes significantly promoted cell proliferation and lipid deposition. Furthermore, overexpression of pFTO in differentiating porcine intramuscular preadipocytes also significantly increased the mRNA levels of adipocyte differentiation transcription factors peroxisome proliferators-activated receptor γ (PPARγ), CCAAT/enhancer binding protein α (C/EBPα), lipoprotein lipase (LPL) and fatty acid synthase (FAS). Our findings provide the first functional evidence to reveal a role of pFTO in porcine intramuscular preadipocyte proliferation and differentiation.

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<![CDATA[Probiotic Gut Microbiota Isolate Interacts with Dendritic Cells via Glycosylated Heterotrimeric Pili]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9f6ab0ee8fa60b7030a

Mapping of the microbial molecules underlying microbiota-host interactions is key to understand how microbiota preserve mucosal homeostasis. A pivotal family of such bacterial molecules are pili. Pili are proteinaceous cell wall appendages with a well-documented role in adhesion, whilst their role in immune interaction with the host is less established. Gram-positive pili are often posttranslationally modified by sortase-specific cleavage reactions and the formation of intramolecular peptide bonds. Here we report glycosylation as a new level of posttranslational modification of sortase-dependent pili of a beneficial microbiota species and its role in immune modulation. We focused on the SpaCBA pili of the model probiotic and beneficial human gut microbiota isolate Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG. A unique combination of molecular techniques, nanoscale mechanical and immunological approaches led to the identification of mannose and fucose residues on the SpaCBA pili. These glycans on the pili are recognized by human dendritic cells via the C-type lectin receptor DC-SIGN, a key carbohydrate-dependent immune tailoring pattern recognition receptor. This specific lectin-sugar interaction is moreover of functional importance and modulated the cytokine response of dendritic cells. This provides insight into the direct role bacterial glycoproteins can play in the immunomodulation of the host. Modification of the complex heterotrimeric pili of a model probiotic and microbiota isolate with mannose and fucose is of importance for the functional interaction with the host immune lectin receptor DC-SIGN on human dendritic cells. Our findings shed light on the yet underappreciated role of glycoconjugates in bacteria-host interactions.

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<![CDATA[Antigenic Variation of East/Central/South African and Asian Chikungunya Virus Genotypes in Neutralization by Immune Sera]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9f7ab0ee8fa60b70c60

Background

Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a re-emerging mosquito-borne virus which causes epidemics of fever, severe joint pain and rash. Between 2005 and 2010, the East/Central/South African (ECSA) genotype was responsible for global explosive outbreaks across India, the Indian Ocean and Southeast Asia. From late 2013, Asian genotype CHIKV has caused outbreaks in the Americas. The characteristics of cross-antibody efficacy and epitopes are poorly understood.

Methodology/Principal Findings

We characterized human immune sera collected during two independent outbreaks in Malaysia of the Asian genotype in 2006 and the ECSA genotype in 2008–2010. Neutralizing capacity was analyzed against representative clinical isolates as well as viruses rescued from infectious clones of ECSA and Asian CHIKV. Using whole virus antigen and recombinant E1 and E2 envelope glycoproteins, we further investigated antibody binding sites, epitopes, and antibody titers. Both ECSA and Asian sera demonstrated stronger neutralizing capacity against the ECSA genotype, which corresponded to strong epitope-antibody interaction. ECSA serum targeted conformational epitope sites in the E1-E2 glycoprotein, and E1-E211K, E2-I2T, E2-H5N, E2-G118S and E2-S194G are key amino acids that enhance cross-neutralizing efficacy. As for Asian serum, the antibodies targeting E2 glycoprotein correlated with neutralizing efficacy, and I2T, H5N, G118S and S194G altered and improved the neutralization profile. Rabbit polyclonal antibody against the N-terminal linear neutralizing epitope from the ECSA sequence has reduced binding capacity and neutralization efficacy against Asian CHIKV. These findings imply that the choice of vaccine strain may impact cross-protection against different genotypes.

Conclusion/Significance

Immune serum from humans infected with CHIKV of either ECSA or Asian genotypes showed differences in binding and neutralization characteristics. These findings have implications for the continued outbreaks of co-circulating CHIKV genotypes and effective design of vaccines and diagnostic serological assays.

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<![CDATA[Preparation of a novel antiserum to aromatase with high affinity and specificity: Its clinicopathological significance on breast cancer tissue]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5aab0ee8fa60bdf697

Aromatase inhibitors have been widely used for the endocrine treatment of estrogen-dependent breast cancer in postmenopausal patients. However, clinicopathological studies of aromatase have been limited due to unsatisfactory specificity and/or restricted availability of anti-aromatase antibodies. Here, we have generated a polyclonal antiserum with high affinity and specificity for human aromatase using a monoclonal antibody tagged immunoaffinity chromatography on an industrial production scale. Our preliminary immunohistochemical analysis of 221 invasive breast cancer cases indicated that 87.3% (193/221) had at least 5% aromatase positive cells. The histoscore for aromatase was inversely correlated with pT (p = 0.019), pN (p = 0.001), stage (p < 0.001), histologic grade (p = 0.003), lymphatic infiltration (p < 0.001), venous infiltration (p < 0.001), and Ki-67 index (p < 0.001). However, cancer aromatase expression was independent of estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PgR), and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 statuses. This antiserum will be applicable to clinicopathological examination of aromatase in addition to ER and PgR for an appropriate use of aromatase inhibitor on the treatment of breast cancer. Further studies on the relationship between Aromatase inhibitors have been widely used for the endocrine treatment of estrogen-dependent breast cancer in postmenopausal patients. However, clinicopathological studies of aromatase have been limited due to unsatisfactory specificity and/or restricted availability of anti-aromatase antibodies. Here, we have generated a polyclonal antiserum with high affinity and specificity for human aromatase using a monoclonal antibody tagged immunoaffinity chromatography on an industrial production scale. Our preliminary immunohistochemical analysis of 221 invasive breast cancer cases indicated that 87.3% (193/221) had at least 5% aromatase positive cells. The histoscore for aromatase was inversely correlated with pT (p = 0.019), pN (p = 0.001), stage (p < 0.001), histologic grade (p = 0.003), lymphatic infiltration (p < 0.001), venous infiltration (p < 0.001), and Ki-67 index (p < 0.001). However, cancer aromatase expression was independent of estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PgR), and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 statuses. This antiserum will be applicable to clinicopathological examination of aromatase in addition to ER and PgR for an appropriate use of aromatase inhibitor on the treatment of breast cancer. Further studies on the relationship between aromatase expression and aromatase inhibitors are warranted.

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<![CDATA[Combination of the immunization with the sequence close to the consensus sequence and two DNA prime plus one VLP boost generate H5 hemagglutinin specific broad neutralizing antibodies]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5cab0ee8fa60bdffe2

Hemagglutinin (HA) head has long been considered to be able to elicit only a narrow, strain-specific antibody response as it undergoes rapid antigenic drift. However, we previously showed that a heterologous prime-boost strategy, in which mice were primed twice with DNA encoding HA and boosted once with virus-like particles (VLP) from an H5N1 strain A/Thailand/1(KAN)-1/2004 (noted as TH DDV), induced anti-head broad cross-H5 neutralizing antibody response. To explain why TH DDV immunization could generate such breadth, we systemically compared the neutralization breadth and potency between TH DDV sera and immune sera elicited by TH DDD (three times of DNA immunizations), TH VVV (three times of VLP immunizations), TH DV (one DNA prime plus one VLP boost) and TK DDV (plasmid DNA and VLP derived from another H5N1 strain, A/Turkey/65596/2006). Then we determined the antigenic sites (AS) on TH HA head and the key residues of the main antigenic site. Through the comparison of different regiments, we found that the combination of the immunization with the sequence close to the consensus sequence and two DNA prime plus one VLP boost caused that TH DDV immunization generate broad neutralizing antibodies. Antigenic analysis showed that TH DDV, TH DV, TH DDD and TH VVV sera recognize the common antigenic site AS1. Antibodies directed to AS1 contribute to the largest proportion of the neutralizing activity of these immune sera. Residues 188 and 193 in AS1 are the key residues which are responsible for neutralization breadth of the immune sera. Interestingly, residues 188 and 193 locate in classical antigen sites but are relatively conserved among the 16 tested strains and 1,663 HA sequences from NCBI database. Thus, our results strongly indicate that it is feasible to develop broad cross-H5 influenza vaccines against HA head.

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<![CDATA[Analysis of a cAMP regulated coactivator family reveals an alternative phosphorylation motif for AMPK family members]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db50ab0ee8fa60bdbe3a

The second messenger cAMP stimulates cellular gene expression via the PKA-mediated phosphorylation of the transcription factor CREB and through dephosphorylation of the cAMP-responsive transcriptional coactivators (CRTCs). Under basal conditions, CRTCs are phosphorylated by members of the AMPK family of Ser/Thr kinases and sequestered in the cytoplasm via a phosphorylation-dependent association with 14-3-3 proteins. Increases in cAMP promote the dephosphorylation and nuclear translocation of CRTCs, where they bind to CREB and stimulate relevant target genes. Although they share considerable sequence homology, members of the CRTC family exert non-overlapping effects on cellular gene expression through as yet unidentified mechanisms. Here we show that the three CRTCs exhibit distinct patterns of 14-3-3 binding at three conserved sites corresponding to S70, S171, and S275 (in CRTC2). S171 functions as the gatekeeper site for 14-3-3 binding; it acts cooperatively with S275 in stabilizing this interaction following its phosphorylation by the cAMP-responsive SIK and the cAMP-nonresponsive MARK kinases. Although S171 contains a consensus recognition site for phosphorylation by AMPK family members, S70 and S275 carry variant motifs (MNTGGS275LPDL), lacking basic residues that are otherwise critical for SIK/MARK recognition as well as 14-3-3 binding. Correspondingly, the activity of these motifs differs between CRTC family members. As the variant (SLPDL) motif is present and apparently phosphorylated in other mammalian proteins, our studies suggest that the regulation of cellular targets by AMPK family members is more extensive than previously appreciated.

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<![CDATA[Novel fimbrilin PGN_1808 in Porphyromonas gingivalis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db52ab0ee8fa60bdc7b2

Porphyromonas gingivalis, a periodontopathic gram-negative anaerobic bacterium, generally expresses two types of fimbriae, FimA and Mfa1. However, a novel potential fimbrilin, PGN_1808, in P. gingivalis strain ATCC 33277 was recently identified by an in silico structural homology search. In this study, we experimentally examined whether the protein formed a fimbrial structure. Anion-exchange chromatography showed that the elution peak of the protein was not identical to those of the major fimbrilins of FimA and Mfa1, indicating that PGN_1808 is not a component of these fimbriae. Electrophoretic analyses showed that PGN_1808 formed a polymer, although it was detergent and heat labile compared to FimA and Mfa1. Transmission electron microscopy showed filamentous structures (2‒3 nm × 200‒400 nm) on the cell surfaces of a PGN_1808-overexpressing P. gingivalis mutant (deficient in both FimA and Mfa1 fimbriae) and in the PGN_1808 fraction. PGN_1808 was detected in 81 of 84 wild-type strains of P. gingivalis by western blotting, suggesting that the protein is generally present in P. gingivalis.

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