[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Disease prevention through vaccination is one of the most important achievements of medicine. Today, we have a substantial number of vaccines against a variety of pathogens. In this context, poxviruses and vaccinology are closely related, as the birth of modern vaccinology was marked by the use of poxviruses as immunogens and so was the eradication of smallpox, one of the world’s most feared diseases ever. Nowadays, poxviruses continue to notoriously contribute to vaccinology since their use as vaccine vectors has become popular and widespread. One of the most promising vectors is the modified vaccinia ankara. In this review we provide an overview of the contribution of poxvirus to vaccine immunology, particularly focusing on modified vaccinia ankara-based vaccines developed to date.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The present study compares the profile of NK cells in an in vitro re-exposure by Vaccinia virus (VACV), in groups that have had a previous vaccination or natural infection. Our data suggests that stimulation with VACV triggers a cytotoxic response by NK cells marked by an increase of NCRs: NKp30, NKp44, and NKp46 in infected (vaccinated and unvaccinated) subjects and in non-infected vaccinated patients, when compared with non-infected unvaccinated individuals. However, the degranulation and secretion processes are inhibited in infected (vaccinated and unvaccinated) subjects and in the non-infected vaccinated patients, when compared with non-infected unvaccinated individuals. We demonstrated that stimulation with VACV downregulates the percentage of expression of perforin, granzyme A, and CD107a, but upregulate CD94 in infected (vaccinated and unvaccinated) subjects and in non-infected vaccinated patients, when compared with non-infected unvaccinated individuals. Furthermore, the percentage of IFN-γ+ NK cells was significantly lower in non-infected unvaccinated subjects, when compared with infected (vaccinated and unvaccinated) and non-infected vaccinated individuals. Our results also show that the percentage of TNF-α+ NK cells was significantly higher in infected (vaccinated and unvaccinated) subjects and in non-infected vaccinated patients, when compared with non-infected unvaccinated individuals, after in vitro stimulation with UV-inactivated VACV. Our data suggest that the expression of NCRs NKp30, NKp44, NKp46 and cytokines by NK cells are important in the innate response against VACV.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The use of recombinant viral vectors expressing T. gondii antigens is a safe and efficient approach to induce immune response against the parasite and a valuable tool for vaccine development. We have previously protected mice from toxoplasmosis by immunizing the animals with an adenovirus expressing the protein SAG1 (AdSAG1) of T. gondii. We are now looking for ways to improve the vaccination strategy and enhance protection. One limitation of homologous vaccinations (sequential doses of the same vector) is induction of anti-vector immune response that blocks cell transduction, restricts transgene expression and, consequently, compromises the overall outcome of vaccination. One way to avert the effects of anti-vector response is to use different viruses in prime and boost (heterologous vaccination). Bearing this in mind, we generated a modified Vaccinia Virus Ankara encoding SAG1 (MVASAG1), to be tested as boost agent after prime with AdSAG1. Although minor differences were observed in the magnitude of the anti-SAG1 immune response induced by each vaccination protocol, the heterologous immunization with AdSAG1 followed by MVASAG1 resulted in improved capacity to control brain cyst formation in a model of chronic toxoplasmosis in C57BL/6 mice.
PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(5):e63201. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The present study evaluates the immune response of memory CD4+ and CD8+ T cells from patients following a natural Vaccinia virus (VACV) infection. A total of 42 individuals were involved in the study being: 22 previously infected individuals (vaccinated or not against smallpox) and 20 non-infected individuals (vaccinated or not). A short-term in vitro stimulation with UV-inactivated VACV of whole blood cells was performed. Our study showed that previously infected individuals have a lower percentage of CD4+ T cells expressing lymph-node homing receptors (CD4+CD62L+CCR7+) and higher percentage of memory CD4+ T cells subsets (CD4+CD45ROHigh) when compared with non-infected subjects, after in vitro viral stimulation. We also showed that infected individuals presented higher percentages of CD4+ and CD8+ memory T lymphocytes expressing IFN-γ when compared to non-infected individuals. We verified that the percentage of CD4+ and CD8+ T memory cells expressing TNF-α was higher in infected and non-infected vaccinated subjects when compared with non-infected unvaccinated individual. We also observed that previously infected individuals have higher percentages of CD8+ T cells expressing lymph-node homing receptors (CCR7+ and CD62L+) and that the memory T cells expressing IFN-γ and TNF-α were at higher percentages in the whole blood cells from infected and non-infected vaccinated individuals, when compared to unvaccinated non-infected subjects. Thus, our findings suggest that CD4+ and CD8+ T cells are involved in the immune memory response against Vaccinia virus natural infection.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dengue virus (DENV) is the most prevalent arbovirus in the world, found mainly in tropical regions. As clinical manifestations present frequently as nonspecific febrile illness, laboratory diagnosis is essential to confirm DENV infections and for epidemiological studies. Recombinant envelope (E) antigens of four serotypes of DENV were used to develop an immunoglobulin G enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (IgG-ELISA). To evaluate the IgG-ELISA, a panel of serum samples that had been tested previously by a plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT) was investigated for the presence of anti-E antibodies against the four DENV serotypes. IgG-ELISA was found to have a sensitivity (91%) and specificity (98%) at a receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) optimized cutoff and demonstrated high performance as well as good indexes. A concordance of 97% was achieved between both assays, and only 21/704 (3%) samples were not concordant. The results of the present study demonstrate a moderate correlation between neutralizing antibody titers and IgG-ELISA values. These findings indicate that the recombinant protein-based IgG-ELISA is a suitable method for routine serodiagnosis, monitoring and seroepidemiological studies of DENV infections.
Journal of virological methods 09/2012; · 2.13 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In 2010, the WHO celebrated the 30th anniversary of the smallpox eradication. Ironically, infections caused by viruses related to smallpox are being increasingly reported worldwide, including Monkeypox, Cowpox, and Vaccinia virus (VACV). Little is known about the human immunological responses elicited during acute infections caused by orthopoxviruses. We have followed VACV zoonotic outbreaks taking place in Brazil and analyzed cellular immune responses in patients acutely infected by VACV. Results indicated that these patients show a biased immune modulation when compared to noninfected controls. Amounts of B cells are low and less activated in infected patients. Although present, T CD4(+) cells are also less activated when compared to noninfected individuals, and so are monocytes/macrophages. Similar results were obtained when Balb/C mice were experimentally infected with a VACV sample isolated during the zoonotic outbreaks. Taking together, the data suggest that zoonotic VACVs modulate specific immune cell compartments during an acute infection in humans.
Clinical and Developmental Immunology 01/2012; 2012:974067. · 3.06 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Since 1999, several Vaccinia virus (VACV) isolates, the etiological agents of bovine vaccinia (BV), have been frequently isolated and characterized with various biological and molecular methods. The results from these approaches have grouped these VACV isolates into two different clusters. This dichotomy has elicited debates surrounding the origin of the Brazilian VACV and its epidemiological significance. To ascertain vital information to settle these debates, we and other research groups have made efforts to identify molecular markers to discriminate VACV from other viruses of the genus Orthopoxvirus (OPV) and other VACV-BR groups. In this way, some genes have been identified as useful markers to discriminate between the VACV-BR groups. However, new markers are needed to infer ancestry and to correlate each sample or group with its unique epidemiological and biological features. The aims of this work were to characterize a new VACV isolate (VACV DMTV-2005) molecularly and biologically using conserved and non-conserved gene analyses for phylogenetic inference and to search for new genes that would elucidate the VACV-BR dichotomy. The VACV DMTV-2005 isolate reported in this study is biologically and phylogenetically clustered with other strains of Group 1 VACV-BR, the most prevalent VACV group that was isolated during the bovine vaccinia outbreaks in Brazil. Sequence analysis of C23L, the gene that encodes for the CC-chemokine-binding protein, revealed a ten-nucleotide deletion, which is a new Group 1 Brazilian VACV genetic marker. This deletion in the C23L open reading frame produces a premature stop-codon that is shared by all Group 1 VACV-BR strains and may also reflect the VACV-BR dichotomy; the deletion can also be considered to be a putative genetic marker for non-virulent Brazilian VACV isolates and may be used for the detection and molecular characterization of new isolates.
PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(11):e50413. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Vaccinia virus (VACV), the prototype species of the Orthopoxvirus (OPV) genus, causes an occupational zoonotic disease in Brazil that is primarily associated with the handling of infected dairy cattle. Cattle and human outbreaks have been described in southeastern Brazil since 1999 and have now occurred in almost half of the territory. Phylogenetic studies have shown high levels of polymorphisms among isolated VACVs, which indicate the existence of at least two genetically divergent clades; this has also been proven in virulence assays in a mouse model system. In humans, VACV infection is characterized by skin lesions, primarily on the hands, accompanied by systemic symptoms such as fever, myalgia, headache and lymphadenopathy. In this review, we will discuss the virological, epidemiological, ecological and clinical aspects of VACV infection, its diagnosis and compounds that potentially could be used for the treatment of severe cases.
Antiviral research 08/2011; 92(2):150-63. · 3.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human herpesvirus type 1 (HHV-1) is widely dispersed among the human population. Although infection is often asymptomatic in humans, nonhuman primates develop a severe and often fatal infection. In August 2006, 13 black-tufted marmosets (Callithrix penincillata) from a group of 14 presented with clinical apathy, anorexia, and ataxia. Physical examination revealed conjunctivitis, erosive or ulcerative lesions on the skin, and swollen lymph nodes. Of the 14 animals captured, 10 died. Grossly, ulcers and erosions were observed on the skin of face, nasal planum, lips, and oral mucosa. Histologically, superficial vesicular and erosive stomatitis with associated basophilic intranuclear inclusion bodies in the squamous epithelium were observed. Swabs from oral lesions and tissue samples from necropsied animals were positive for HHV-1 by nested polymerase chain reaction for eight animals.
Journal of wildlife diseases 07/2011; 47(3):690-3. · 1.27 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Psittacid herpesvirus (PsHV) was isolated from 41 birds kept in captivity in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais/Brazil using chicken embryo fibroblasts (CEF) cell cultures. For this study, leukocytes or cloacal swabs of live birds were used. Also, portions of liver, spleen or kidney from birds collected at necropsy were utilized for these tests. PCR tests confirmed the presence of PsHV in 100% of samples. Thirty-three of the PCR products were sequenced and the results disclosed a 99% and 100% identity when compared with other sequences PsHV-1 (AY372243.1 and AF261756.1), previously deposited in GenBank. In addition, histopathology was performed and 19 of the 29 birds contained random multifocal lymphoplasmacytic hepatitis with necrotic foci, suggestive of viral infection. Three samples were examined by electron microscopy to visualize the viral particles obtained from cell culture. The viral structures measured 269 nm in average, had envelopes with an icosahedral capsid and tegument, consistent with herpesvirus. Thus, a total of 41 isolates were obtained from PsHV cell cultivation in CEF, confirming the circulation of the virus between parrots kept in captivity in Belo Horizonte, and affirming the importance of further studies in this area.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dengue virus nonstructural protein 1 (NS1) is a glycoprotein involved in viral RNA replication. NS1 associates with host cell proteins and can be found in lipid raft domains on the host cell surface, suggesting an involvement in signal transduction events. In this work, we observed that NS1 expression in HepG2 cells increases nuclear translocation of NF-κB p65 protein, which was paralleled by DNA-protein complex formation. Luciferase assays showed an increase in NF-κB transcriptional activities in NS1-expressing cells when compared to parental cells. NS1 may enhance NF-κB function in host cells and contribute to the pathogenesis of dengue.
Archives of Virology 03/2011; 156(7):1275-9. · 2.03 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Blood samples from 1,072 domestic cats of nine administrative regions of Belo Horizonte, MG, were collected and tested using PCR nested for the occurrence of feline leukemia virus (FeLV). Overall occurrence was 47.5% (507/1072) being North (68.1%) and East (54.4%) the most prevalent areas. Epidemiological data showed that FeLV infection was very common among examined cats and breed neither gender nor were predisposing factors for FeLV. The results suggest that the agglomeration of a large number of cats in the same environment can be an important factor for the increase in the rate of transmission of this retrovirus among domestic cats in the studied city.
Arquivo Brasileiro de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia 01/2011; 63:778-783. · 0.27 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Adverse events upon smallpox vaccination with fully-replicative strains of Vaccinia virus (VACV) comprise an array of clinical manifestations that occur primarily in immunocompromised patients leading to significant host morbidity/mortality. The expansion of immune-suppressed populations and the possible release of Variola virus as a bioterrorist act have given rise to concerns over vaccination complications should more widespread vaccination be reinitiated. Our goal was to evaluate the components of the host immune system that are sufficient to prevent morbidity/mortality in a murine model of tail scarification, which mimics immunological and clinical features of smallpox vaccination in humans. Infection of C57BL/6 wild-type mice led to a strictly localized infection, with complete viral clearance by day 28 p.i. On the other hand, infection of T and B-cell deficient mice (Rag1(-/-)) produced a severe disease, with uncontrolled viral replication at the inoculation site and dissemination to internal organs. Infection of B-cell deficient animals (µMT) produced no mortality. However, viral clearance in µMT animals was delayed compared to WT animals, with detectable viral titers in tail and internal organs late in infection. Treatment of Rag1(-/-) with rabbit hyperimmune anti-vaccinia serum had a subtle effect on the morbidity/mortality of this strain, but it was effective in reduce viral titers in ovaries. Finally, NUDE athymic mice showed a similar outcome of infection as Rag1(-/-), and passive transfer of WT T cells to Rag1(-/-) animals proved fully effective in preventing morbidity/mortality. These results strongly suggest that both T and B cells are important in the immune response to primary VACV infection in mice, and that T-cells are required to control the infection at the inoculation site and providing help for B-cells to produce antibodies, which help to prevent viral dissemination. These insights might prove helpful to better identify individuals with higher risk of complications after infection with poxvirus.
PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(4):e18924. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The family Poxviridae comprises the most complex animal DNA viruses. During some poxvirus infections, A-type inclusion bodies (ATIs), codified by the ati gene, are produced. Although some studies have compared poxviruses that encode these inclusion bodies with those that do not, the biological function of ATIs is poorly understood. A recombinant ati-deleted cowpox virus was constructed and compared with the wild-type virus in in vitro experiments including electron microscopy and plaque and viral growth assays. No significant differences were observed in vitro. This reinforces the conclusion that the inclusion body is not essential for in vitro viral replication and morphogenesis. Additionally, different lesion progressions in vivo were observed by macroscopic and histological analysis, suggesting that the presence or absence of ATIs could result in different healing dynamics. This is the first time that the role of ATIs during viral replication has been studied based solely on one variable, the presence or absence of ATIs.
Archives of Virology 01/2011; 156(4):617-28. · 2.03 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: HTLV-1 infects millions of people around the world and induces myelopathy (HAM/TSP), adult T-cell leukemia (ATL) or other inflammatory or rheumatologic diseases. The host-virus interaction causes asymptomatic carriers to develop HAM/TSP. Biomarkers are needed to predict patients who are at risk for HAM/TSP. Tax is highly immunogenic and is a major target protein recognized by cytotoxic T lymphocytes. Anti-Tax antibodies are involved in HAM/TSP pathogenesis.
To assess anti-Tax IgG reactivity with a flow cytometry assay (FCA) using an infection/transfection system with Vaccinia virus and pLW44/Tax-expressing Tax and to correlate the anti-Tax response and the HTLV-1 proviral load.
: We enrolled 81 individuals: 9 HTLV-1 seronegative (NP) and 72 HTLV-1 positive (23 HTLV-1 asymptomatic carriers (AC), 12 oligosymptomatic patients (OL), 7 with rheumatologic diseases (DR) and 30 with HAM/TSP (HT)). Anti-Tax reactivity was assessed by FCA, and HTLV-1 proviral load was measured with real time PCR.
The HT and DR groups showed greater anti-Tax IgG reactivity (p<0.001 and p<0.05 comparing HT to the OL and AC group, respectively; p<0.05 comparing DR to the OL group), and the reactivity in the DR+HT group was significantly different when compared to the AC group (p<0.05) and to the OL group (p<0.001). The proviral load was higher in the HT group compared to the OL (p<0.001) and in the HT+DR group compared to OL (p<0.001). There was no correlation between anti-Tax IgG reactivity and proviral load in any of the HTLV-1-infected groups.
These findings suggest that although anti-Tax IgG reactivity and the HTLV-1 proviral load are important markers of the development of HTLV-1-associated diseases, their levels are not correlated.
Journal of clinical virology: the official publication of the Pan American Society for Clinical Virology 10/2010; 50(1):13-8. · 3.12 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Occupational exanthematic diseases represent an important cause of public health impact and economical losses. Among the viral exanthematic diseases, two caused by poxviruses are noteworthy: the bovine vaccinia (BV), caused by the Vaccinia virus (VACV); and the milker's nodule, in which the agent is the Pseudocowpox virus (PCPV). Both agents are zoonotic and have been associated with several cases of bovine infection. In Brazilian rural areas BV has been highly prevalent, particularly in milk herds. Farmers, milkers and their close contacts developed lesions on the hands, forearms, legs and face accompanied by several systemic symptoms. Although VACV and PCPV present with similar epidemiological and transmission patterns, no VACV and PCPV co-infection cases have to date been described.
To describe the first case of zoonotic VACV and PCVP co-infection, based on serological and molecular methods.
In this work we report a case of a Brazilian rural worker who presented with a large severely ulcerated-pustule skin lesion, associated with fever, headache, malaise, myalgia and axillary, inguinal and cervical limphadenopathy. The worker declared occupational contact with cattle that had notable injuries on their teats. Human and bovine clinical samples were collected and submitted to serological and molecular tests. PCR and phylogenetic analysis revealed the presence of VACV DNA and PCPV DNA in the patient's lesion. Serological tests indicated anti-VACV neutralizing antibodies and molecular assays showed the presence of VACV and PCPV DNA in the patient sera. VACV and PCPV also were detected in dairy cattle.
Together, these results indicate a case of zoonotic VACV/PCPV co-infection. Epidemiological surveillance and appropriate medical treatment are essential for the control of both diseases, especially in the most severe cases, as described in the present study.
Journal of clinical virology: the official publication of the Pan American Society for Clinical Virology 03/2010; 48(1):69-72. · 3.12 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human T-lymphotropic virus 1 (HTLV-1) induces an immune-mediated inflammatory disease affecting the nervous system that eventually is accompanied by ocular, rheumatic and dermatologic manifestations (HTLV-1 associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis, or HAM/TSP). Proviral load and HTLV-1 protein expression, mainly of Tax, is correlated with disease progression and induction of host-virus equilibrium breakdown that, reportedly, involves the presence of Tax-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL), T regulatory cells and anti-Tax antibodies. Based on knowledge of anti-Tax antibodies as markers of disease progression, the objectives of this study were both to design an infection/transfection system using the Vaccinia virus and a tax-encoding plasmid for the expression of Tax protein as well as to use this cell support to evaluate anti-Tax IgG by flow cytometry. The flow cytometry assay was standardized using pooled sera from each test group (negative, asymptomatic and HAM/TSP patients). The HAM/TSP group presented higher IgG anti-Tax reactivity (above 70%) than the asymptomatic group (nearly 40% reactivity). The data indicate that the infection/transfection system is useful for assessing Tax expression. This is a promising assay for use as a diagnostic tool to detect IgG anti-Tax and monitor HTLV-1 infected individuals.
Journal of virological methods 02/2010; 166(1-2):65-71. · 2.13 Impact Factor