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Published Online: 17 October 2014

A Glycoprotein Subunit Vaccine Elicits a Strong Rift Valley Fever Virus Neutralizing Antibody Response in Sheep

Publication: Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases
Volume 14, Issue Number 10

Abstract

Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), a member of the Bunyaviridae family, is a mosquito-borne zoonotic pathogen that causes serious morbidity and mortality in livestock and humans. The recent spread of the virus beyond its traditional endemic boundaries in Africa to the Arabian Peninsula coupled with the presence of susceptible vectors in nonendemic countries has created increased interest in RVF vaccines. Subunit vaccines composed of specific virus proteins expressed in eukaryotic or prokaryotic expression systems are shown to elicit neutralizing antibodies in susceptible hosts. RVFV structural proteins, amino-terminus glycoprotein (Gn), and carboxyl-terminus glycoprotein (Gc), were expressed using a recombinant baculovirus expression system. The recombinant proteins were reconstituted as a GnGc subunit vaccine formulation and evaluated for immunogenicity in a target species, sheep. Six sheep were each immunized with a primary dose of 50 μg of each vaccine immunogen with the adjuvant montanide ISA25; at day 21, postvaccination, each animal received a second dose of the same vaccine. The vaccine induced a strong antibody response in all animals as determined by indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). A plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT80) showed the primary dose of the vaccine was sufficient to elicit potentially protective virus neutralizing antibody titers ranging from 40 to 160, and the second vaccine dose boosted the titer to more than 1280. Furthermore, all animals tested positive for neutralizing antibodies at day 328 postvaccination. ELISA analysis using the recombinant nucleocapsid protein as a negative marker antigen indicated that the vaccine candidate is DIVA (differentiating infected from vaccinated animals) compatible and represents a promising vaccine platform for RVFV infection in susceptible species.

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Published In

cover image Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases
Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases
Volume 14Issue Number 10October 2014
Pages: 746 - 756
PubMed: 25325319

History

Published online: 17 October 2014
Published in print: October 2014

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Bonto Faburay
Department of Diagnostic Medicine/Pathobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas.
Maxim Lebedev
Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, South Dakota State University, Brookings, South Dakota.
D. Scott McVey
United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Arthropod Borne Animal Disease Research Unit, Manhattan, Kansas.
William Wilson
United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Arthropod Borne Animal Disease Research Unit, Manhattan, Kansas.
Igor Morozov
Department of Diagnostic Medicine/Pathobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas.
Alan Young
Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, South Dakota State University, Brookings, South Dakota.
Juergen A. Richt
Department of Diagnostic Medicine/Pathobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas.

Notes

Address correspondence to:Bonto FaburayDepartment of Diagnostic Medicine/PathobiologyCollege of Veterinary MedicineKansas State University1800 Denison AvenueMosier Hall K218Manhattan, KS 66506E-mail: [email protected]
andJuergen A. RichtDepartment of Diagnostic Medicine/PathobiologyCollege of Veterinary MedicineKansas State University1800 Denison AvenueMosier Hall K224Manhattan, KS 66506E-mail: [email protected]

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No competing financial interests exist.

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