Discovery of novel cross-protective Rickettsia prowazekii T-cell antigens using a combined reverse vaccinology and in vivo screening approach

Erika Caro-Gomez, Michal Gazi, Yenny Goez, Gustavo Valbuena

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Rickettsial agents are some of the most lethal pathogens known to man. Among them, Rickettsia prowazekii is a select agent with potential use for bioterrorism; yet, there is no anti-Rickettsia vaccine commercially available. Owing to the obligate intracellular lifestyle of rickettsiae, CD8+ T cells are indispensable for protective cellular immunity. Furthermore, T cells can mediate cross-protective immunity between different pathogenic Rickettsia, a finding consistent with the remarkable similarity among rickettsial genomes. However, Rickettsia T cell antigens remain unidentified. In the present study, we report an algorithm that allowed us to identify and validate four novel R. prowazekii vaccine antigen candidates recognized by CD8+ T cells from a set of twelve in silico-defined protein targets. Our results highlight the importance of combining proteasome-processing as well as MHC class-I-binding predictions. The novel rickettsial vaccine candidate antigens, RP778, RP739, RP598, and RP403, protected mice against a lethal challenge with Rickettsia typhi, which is indicative of cross-protective immunity within the typhus group rickettsiae. Together, our findings validate a reverse vaccinology approach as a viable strategy to identify protective rickettsial antigens and highlight the feasibility of a subunit vaccine that triggers T-cell-mediated cross-protection among diverse rickettsiae.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4968-4976
Number of pages9
JournalVaccine
Volume32
Issue number39
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 3 2014

Fingerprint

Rickettsia prowazekii
Rickettsia
Viral Tumor Antigens
vaccine development
T-lymphocytes
screening
antigens
T-Lymphocytes
cross immunity
vaccines
lethal genes
Rickettsia typhi
Rickettsial Vaccines
Antigens
typhus
Immunity
bioterrorism
Vaccines
Cross Protection
subunit vaccines

Keywords

  • Reverse vaccinology
  • Rickettsia
  • Vaccine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • veterinary(all)
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Discovery of novel cross-protective Rickettsia prowazekii T-cell antigens using a combined reverse vaccinology and in vivo screening approach. / Caro-Gomez, Erika; Gazi, Michal; Goez, Yenny; Valbuena, Gustavo.

In: Vaccine, Vol. 32, No. 39, 03.09.2014, p. 4968-4976.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Caro-Gomez, Erika ; Gazi, Michal ; Goez, Yenny ; Valbuena, Gustavo. / Discovery of novel cross-protective Rickettsia prowazekii T-cell antigens using a combined reverse vaccinology and in vivo screening approach. In: Vaccine. 2014 ; Vol. 32, No. 39. pp. 4968-4976.
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