Zhuo Zhao

Third Military Medical University, Ch’ung-ch’ing-shih, Chongqing Shi, China

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Publications (6)32.22 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB) is one of the most potent Staphylococcus aureus exotoxins (SEs). Due to its conserved sequence and stable structure, SEB might be a good candidate antigen for MRSA vaccines. Although cellular immune responses to SEB are well-characterized, much less is known regarding SEB-specific humoral immune responses, particularly regarding detailed epitope mapping. In this study, we utilized a recombinant nontoxic mutant of SEB (rSEB) and an AlPO4 adjuvant to immunize BALB/c mice and confirmed that rSEB can induce a high antibody level and effective immune protection against MRSA infection. Next, the antisera of immunized mice were collected, and linear B cell epitopes within SEB were finely mapped using a series of overlapping synthetic peptides. Three immunodominant B cell epitopes of SEB were screened by ELISA, including a novel epitope, SEB205-222, and two known epitopes, SEB97-114 and SEB247-261. Using truncated peptides, an ELISA was performed with peptide-KLH antisera, and the core sequence of the three immunodominant B cell epitopes were verified as SEB97-112, SEB207-222, and SEB247-257. In vitro, all of the immunodominant epitope-specific antisera (anti-SEB97-112, anti-SEB207-222 and anti-SEB247-257) were observed to inhibit SEB-induced T cell mitogenesis and cytokine production from splenic lymphocytes of BALB/c mice. The homology analysis indicated that SEB97-112 and SEB207-222 were well-conserved among different Staphylococcus aureus strains. The 3D crystal structure of SEB indicated that SEB97-112 was in the loop region inside SEB, whereas SEB207-222 and SEB247-257 were in the β-slice region outside SEB. In summary, the fine-mapping of linear B-cell epitopes of the SEB antigen in this study will be useful to understand anti-SEB immunity against MRSA infection further and will be helpful to optimize MRSA vaccine designs that are based on the SEB antigen.
    PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(3):e90445. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND & AIMS:: Immunodominance is an important feature of anti-viral, anti-tumor, and anti-bacterial cellular immune responses, but it is not well-demonstrated in the immune responses against Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori). Antigen-specific CD4(+) T cells protect mice against infection with H. pylori. We investigated the immunodominant CD4(+) T-cell response to neuraminyllactose-binding hemagglutinin (HpaA)- a conserved, H. pylori -specific colonization factor that is being investigated as an antigen for vaccination strategies. METHODS:: HpaA-specific CD4(+) T cells were expanded with autologous peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) that had been incubated with recombinant HpaA, and characterized using overlapping synthetic peptides. We compared the percentage of CD4(+) T cells with specificity for HpaA(88-100), restricted to HLA-DRB1*1501, among 59 H. pylori -infected subjects with different gastric diseases. RESULTS:: We identified and characterized several immunodominant CD4(+) T cell epitopes derived from HpaA. The immunodominant CD4(+) T-cell responses specific to HpaA(88-100) were observed in most H. pylori -infected individuals who expressed HLA-DRB1*1501, and were significantly more abundant in patients with less severe diseases ( P <0.05). CONCLUSIONS:: The HLA-DRB1*1501-restricted immunodominant CD4(+) T-cell response to HpaA(88-100) is associated with reduced risk of severe gastric diseases. Further study of these and other immunodominant CD4(+) T-cell responses to H. pylori will provide insight into mechanisms of protective immunity and aide in vaccine design.
    Gastroenterology 12/2012; · 12.82 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Vaccine-mediated Th1-biased CD4+ T cell responses have been shown to be crucial for protection against Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori). In this study, we investigated whether a vaccine composed of CD4+ T cell epitopes together with Th1 adjuvants could confer protection against H. pylori in a mouse model. We constructed an epitope-based vaccine, designated Epivac, which is composed of predicted immunodominant CD4+ T cell epitopes from H. pylori adhesin A (HpaA), urease B (UreB) and cytotoxin-associated gene A product (CagA). Together with four different Th1 adjuvants, Epivac was administered subcutaneously and the prophylactic potential was examined. Compared to non-immunized mice, immunization with Epivac alone or with a Th1 adjuvant significantly reduced H. pylori colonization, and better protection was observed when an adjuvant was used. Immunized mice exhibited a strong local and systemic Th1-biased immune response, which may contribute to the inhibition of H. pylori colonization. Though a significant specific antibody response was induced by the vaccine, no correlation was found between the intensity of the humoral response and the protective effect. Our results suggest that a vaccine containing CD4+ T cell epitopes is a promising candidate for protection against H. pylori infection.
    Vaccine 11/2012; · 3.77 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Therapeutic vaccination is a desirable alternative for controlling Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection. In the present study, attenuated Salmonella vector vaccines were constructed that expressed fusion proteins complexed with H. pylori CagA, VacA and UreB in different arrangements, and their therapeutic efficacy was evaluated in H. pylori-infected mice. Oral therapeutic immunization with attenuated Salmonella, which expressed the fused protein CVU, significantly decreased H. pylori colonization in the stomach; protection was related to specific CD4(+) T cell Th1 type responses and serum IgG and mucosal sIgA antibody responses. These findings suggested that therapeutic efficacy was related to the arrangement of the fusion protein. It is possible that arrangement decides the expression of recombinant antigen in mice, and the latter results in different therapeutic efficacy. The attenuated Salmonella vector vaccine, which expressed the fused protein arrangement CVU, is superior to others, and could be a candidate vaccine against H. pylori.
    Vaccine 09/2011; 29(38):6679-85. · 3.77 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Th17 cells represent a novel subset of CD4(+) T cells, which is associated with Helicobacter pylori infection. In the present study, we investigated the potential role of Urease subunit B (UreB) in the induction of Th17 cell response. Co-cultured splenic lymphocytes from H. pylori-infected mice with the recombinant UreB (rUreB) elevated IL-17 secretion and caused an increase in the number of Th17 cells. The expression of IL-6 and IL-23 p19 was significantly increased in rUreB-stimulated macrophages. Whole cell protein (WCP) of UreB-deficient strain (UreB(-) strain) induced less Th17 cell responses than that of wild-type strain. In addition, subcutaneous and intranasal immunization of rUreB elicited antigen-specific Th17 cell responses. Intranasal immunization of rUreB reduced H. pylori colonization in the stomach, which was closely related with the increased rUreB-specific Th17 cell responses. These results suggest that UreB is an important protein which is able to elicit Th17 cell responses against H. pylori both in vivo and in vitro.
    Immunobiology 12/2010; 216(7):803-10. · 2.81 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: CD4(+) T cell responses are critical for the pathogenesis of Helicobacter pylori infection. The present study evaluated the role of the Th17 subset in H. pylori infection. H. pylori infection induced significant expression of IL-17 and IFN-gamma in mouse gastric tissue. IL-23 and IL-12 were increased in the gastric tissue and in H. pylori-stimulated macrophages. Cell responses were examined by intracellular staining for IFN-gamma, IL-4, and IL-17. Mice infected with H. pylori developed a mixed Th17/Th1 response; Th17 responses preceded Th1 responses. Treatment of mice with an anti-IL-17 Ab but not a control Ab significantly reduced the H. pylori burden and inflammation in the stomach. H. pylori colonization and gastric inflammation were also lower in IL-17(-/-) mice. Furthermore, administration of recombinant adenovirus encoding mouse IL-17 increased both H. pylori load and inflammation. Further analysis showed that the Th1 cell responses to H. pylori were downregulated when IL-17 is deficient. These results together suggest that H. pylori infection induces a mixed Th17/Th1 cell response and the Th17/IL-17 pathway modulates Th1 cell responses and contributes to pathology.
    The Journal of Immunology 03/2010; 184(9):5121-9. · 5.52 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

59 Citations
32.22 Total Impact Points

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Institutions

  • 2010–2011
    • Third Military Medical University
      Ch’ung-ch’ing-shih, Chongqing Shi, China