11 ene 2023 - 09:18 CET
Immunization with a multivalent Listeria monocytogenes vaccine leads to a strong reduction in vertical transmission and cerebral parasite burden in pregnant and non-pregnant mice infected with Neospora caninum
Dennis Imhof, William Pownall, Kai Pascal Alexander Hänggeli, Camille Monney, Laura Rico-San Román, Luis-Miguel Ortega-Mora, Franck Forterre, Anna Oevermann and Andrew Hemphill
Neospora caninum is an apicomplexan parasite that causes abortion and stillbirth in cattle. We employed the pregnant neosporosis mouse model to investigate the efficacy of a modified version of the attenuated Listeria monocytogenes vaccine vector Lm3Dx_NcSAG1, which expresses the major N. caninum surface antigen SAG1. Multivalent vaccines were generated by the insertion of gra7 and/or rop2 genes into Lm3Dx_NcSAG1, resulting in the double mutants, Lm3Dx_NcSAG1_NcGRA7 and Lm3Dx_NcSAG1_NcROP2, and the triple mutant, Lm3Dx_NcSAG1_NcGRA7_NcROP2. Six experimental groups of female BALB/c mice were inoculated intramuscularly three times at two-week intervals with 1 × 107 CFU of the respective vaccine strains. Seven days post-mating, mice were challenged by the subcutaneous injection of 1 × 105 N. caninum NcSpain-7 tachyzoites. Non-pregnant mice, dams and their offspring were observed daily until day 25 post-partum. Immunization with Lm3Dx_NcSAG1 and Lm3Dx_NcSAG1_NcGRA7_NcROP2 resulted in 70% postnatal pup survival, whereas only 50% and 58% of pups survived in the double mutant-vaccinated groups. Almost all pups had died at the end of the experiment in the infection control. The triple mutant was the most promising vaccine candidate, providing the highest rate of protection against vertical transmission (65%) and CNS infection. Overall, integrating multiple antigens into Lm3Dx_SAG1 resulted in lower vertical transmission and enhanced protection against cerebral infection in dams and in non-pregnant mice.