[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Secondary pneumonia due to Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) causes significant morbidity and mortality. The aim of the research was designed a novel DNA vaccine encoding the Mycobacterium tuberculosis secreted antigen Ag85A fused with the influenza A virus (IAV) HA2 protein to provide protection against both influenza and secondary infection with S. aureus. The DNA vaccine vector efficiently expressed the encoded antigen in mammalian cells, as determined by RT-PCR, Western blotting and immunofluorescence analysis. Mice were immunized with the vaccine by intramuscular injection before challenge with IAV and S. aureus. The pulmonary and the splenocyte culture IFN-gamma levels were significant higher in immunized mice than their respective controls. Although the antibody titer in the HI test was low, the sera of mice immunized with the novel vaccine vector were effective in neutralisation assay in vitro. The vaccine could reduce the loss of body weight in mice during IAV challenge. Both Western blotting and RT-PCR showed that the vaccine markedly enhanced toll like receptor 2 (TLR2) expression in splenocytes after the secondary infection with S. aureus. The survival rate of mice with high TLR2 expression (pEGFP/Ag85A-HA2 or iPR) was significantly increased compared with mice immunized with pEGFP/HA2 after challenge with S. aureus. However, the pulmonary IL-10 concentration and S. aureus titer were significantly decreased in immunized mice, and expression of TLR2 was increased after challenge with S. aureus. These results demonstrated that Ag85A could strengthen the immune response to IAV and S. aureus, and TLR2 was involved in the host response to S. aureus..
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Influenza causes significant morbidity and mortality. Mammalian β-defensins are small peptides of about 4.5-6 kDa in mass and are effectors of the innate immune response with potent antimicrobial activity. In this paper, we focused on the anti-influenza A activity of the recombinant mouse β-defensin 3 (rMBD-3) in vivo and in vitro.
The rMBD-3 peptide was added to Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells at different stages of influenza A virus (IAV) A/PR/8/34 (H1N1) infection and its virus inhibitory properties were determined. Mice were infected with IAV and treated with rMBD-3 peptide from 12 h post-infection. The effect of rMBD-3 peptide was determined by pulmonary viral load, pathology and mortality. In addition, the expression of interleukin (IL)-12, interferon (IFN)-γ and tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α genes in mice with or without rMBD-3 treatment was determined by semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR.
rMBD-3 was shown to protect MDCK cells against IAV infection and had a major role in inhibition of adsorption and uptake by cells infected with IAV. Following the addition of 100 μg/ml rMBD-3 to MDCK cells medium, approximately 80% of cells were protected from infection in vitro. rMBD-3 given by tail vein injection (10 mg/kg/day) was the most effective method to improve the survival rate of the mice. Treatment with rMBD-3 was found to up-regulate IFN-γ and IL-12 gene expression, but reduced expression of the TNF-α gene.
These results demonstrate that rMBD-3 possesses anti-influenza virus activity both in vivo and in vitro that might be of therapeutic use.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A novel DNA vaccine vector encoding the Mycobacterium tuberculosis secreted antigen Ag85A fused with the influenza A virus (IAV) HA2 protein epitopes, pEGFP/Ag85A-sHA2 (pAg85A-sHA2), was designed to provide protection against influenza. The antigen encoded by the DNA vaccine vector was efficiently expressed in mammalian cells, as determined by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and fluorescence analyses. Mice were immunized with the vaccine vector by intramuscular injection before challenge with A/Puerto Rico/8/34 virus (PR8 virus). Sera and the splenocyte culture IFN-γ levels were significantly higher in immunized mice compared with the control mice. The novel vaccine group showed a high neutralization antibody titer in vitro. The novel vaccine vector also reduced the viral loads, increased the survival rates in mice after the PR8 virus challenge and reduced the alveolar inflammatory cell numbers. Sera IL-4 concentrations were significantly increased in mice immunized with the novel vaccine vector on Day 12 after challenge with the PR8 virus. These results demonstrated that short HA2 (sHA2) protein epitopes may provide protection against the PR8 virus and that Ag85A could strengthen the immune response to HA2 epitopes, thus, Ag85A may be developed as a new adjuvant for influenza vaccines.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Influenza (flu) pandemics have posed a great threat to human health in the last century. However, current vaccination strategies and antiviral drugs provide limited protection. RNA interference (RNAi) is an effective means of suppressing influenza virus replication. PB1 is the critical protein subunit of the influenza virus RNA polymerase. The gene encoding this protein, PB1, is highly conserved among different subtypes of IAV and was therefore chosen as the target in this study. The oligonucleotide, PB1-shRNA, contains a 21-bp siRNA corresponding to nucleotides 1,632 to 1,652 of PB1 linear vRNA with BamHI or EcoRI restriction enzyme sites incorporated at the ends. The PB1-shRNA oligonucleotide was directionally cloned into the RNAi-ready pSIREN-shuttle vector. The correct structure of the resulting pSIREN/PB1 plasmid was confirmed by restriction endonuclease digestion. Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells were transfected with pSIREN/PB1 and subsequently infected with IAV at an MOI of 0.1 (A/PR/8/34, H1N1). The virus titer in cell culture supernatants was determined 48 hours later, and it was found that virus growth was inhibited by more than 50-fold relative to controls. Furthermore, embryonated eggs and mice were inoculated with liposome-encapsulated pSIREN/PB1 and then challenged with the A/PR/8/34 virus. The results showed at least a 100-fold inhibition in virus replication in egg allantoic fluid and a survival rate of between 50% and 100% in experimental mice. This study demonstrates that PB1-shRNA expressed by the recombinant plasmid pSIREN/PB1 inhibits influenza A virus replication both in vitro and in vivo. These observations provide a foundation for the development of a new and efficient treatment of influenza infections.
Archives of Virology 08/2011; 156(11):1979-87. · 2.03 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human influenza A virus (IAV) is a major cause of life-threatening respiratory tract disease worldwide. Defensins are small cationic peptides of about 2-6 kDa that are known for their broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity. Here, we focused on the anti-influenza A activity of mouse beta-defensin 2 (mBD2). The prokaryotic expression plasmid pET32a-mBD2 was constructed and introduced into Escherichia coli Rosseta gami (2) to produce recombinant mBD2 (rmBD2). Purified rmBD2 showed strong antiviral activity against IAV in vitro. The protective rate for Madin-Darby canine kidney cells was 93.86% at an rmBD2 concentration of 100 microg/ml. Further studies demonstrated that rmBD2 prevents IAV infection by inhibiting viral entry. In addition, both pretreatment and postinfection treatment with rmBD2 provided protection against lethal virus challenge with IAV in experimental mice, with protection rates of 70 and 30%, respectively. These results suggest that the mBD2 might have important effects on influenza A virus invasion.
Archives of Virology 03/2010; 155(4):491-8. · 2.03 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Alpha-momorcharin (alpha-MMC) is a ribosome-inactivating protein (RIP) with excellent cytotoxicity to tumor cells. However, its strong immunogenicity and short plasma half-life limit its clinical applications. To overcome this, we have to PEGylated alpha-MMC using a branched 20 kDa (mPEG) (2)-Lys-NHS. Homogeneous mono-, di- and tri-PEGylated alpha-MMCs were synthesized, purified and characterized. In vitro and in vivo analysis indicated that the serial PEG-conjugates preserved moderate anti-tumor activity with 36% acute toxicity and at most 66% immunogenicity decrease. These results suggested the potential application of alpha-MMC-PEG conjugates as an anti-tumor agent.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The high variability of influenza virus causes difficulties in the control and prevention of influenza, thus seeking a promising approach for dealing with these problems is a hot topic. Haemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA) are major surface antigens of the influenza virus, and provide effective protection against lethal challenges with this virus. We constructed a DNA vaccine (pHA-IRES2-NA) that co-expressed both HA and NA, and compared its protective efficacy and immunogenic ability with that of singly expressed HA or NA, or a mixture of the two singly expressed proteins. Our findings showed that both HA and NA proteins expressed by pHA-IRES2-NA could be detected in vivo and in vitro. The protection of DNA vaccines was evaluated by serum antibody titres, residual lung virus titres and survival rates of the mice. In the murine model, immunization of pHA-IRES2-NA generated significant anti-HA and anti-NA antibody, increased the percentage of CD8(+) cells and gamma interferon-producing CD8(+) cells and the ratio of Th1/Th2 (T helper) cells, which was comparable to the effects of immunization with HA or NA DNA alone or with a mixture of HA and NA DNA. All the mice inoculated by pHA-IRES2-NA resisted the lethal challenge by homologous influenza virus and survived with low lung virus titre. In addition, previous studies reported that co-expression allowed higher-frequency transduction compared to co-transduction of separated vector systems encoding different genes. The novel HA and NA co-expression DNA vaccine is a successful alternative to using a mixture of purified HA and NA proteins or HA and NA DNA.
Journal of Medical Microbiology 08/2009; 58(Pt 7):845-54. · 2.30 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mouse beta defensin-1 (mBD-1) is a cationic 37-amino acid antimicrobial peptide with three conserved cysterine disulfied bonds. It exhibits a broad antimicrobial spectrum, but mBD-1 against Candida albicans (C. albicans) and Cryptococcus neoformans (C. neoformans) is poorly understood. This study describes the mBD-1 gene, the heterologous fusion expression of the peptide in Escherichia coli, and the bioactive assay of released mature mBD-1. By constructing the expression plasmid (pET32a-mBD1), high yields of soluble mBD-1 fusion protein (0.67 g/L) could be obtained in E. coli and cleaved by enterokinase. The digested product was further purified and desalted with the final amount of pure mature mBD-1 being 0.14 g/L. Classical fungi growth inhibition assay showed clear antifungal activity against C. albicans and C. neoformans with IC(50) of 5 and 2 microM, respectively. The results show that the mBD-1 control fungal colonization through hyphal induction, direct fungicidal activity, and the activity is suppressed by increasing NaCl concentration. Successful expression of the mBD-1 peptide in E. coli offers a basis for further studying its antifungal mechanisms and may provide significance in developing this peptide to an antifungal drug.
Applied biochemistry and biotechnology 04/2009; 160(1):213-21. · 1.94 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Influenza (flu) pandemics have presented a threat to human health in the past century. Because of outbreaks of avian flu in humans in some developing countries in recent years, humans are more eager to find a way to control flu. Mammalian beta-defensins (beta-defensins) are associated primarily with mucosal and skin innate immunity. Previous studies have demonstrated antimicrobial properties of a variety of defensin peptides. We have identified the presence of mouse beta-defensin 1, 2, and 3 genes (Mbd-1, 2, and 3) in trachea and lung tissues by RT-PCR before and after infection with influenza virus. We constructed a eukaryotic expression plasmid containing Mbd-3, pcDNA 3.1(+)/MBD-3, and the plasmid was introduced into Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells by transfection. The expression of Mbd-3 in MDCK cells was verified by immunofluorescence test, RT-PCR, and Western blot. The pcDNA 3.1(+)/MBD-3 plasmid was injected into mice to observe its effect against influenza A virus (IAV) in vivo. Mouse beta-defensin genes could be expressed in trachea and lung tissues before IAV infection, but expression of Mbd-2 and Mbd-3 was increased significantly after IAV infection. The survival rate of mice with MBD-3 against IAV challenge was 71.43%, and MDCK cells with MBD-3 could clearly inhibit IAV replication. The results demonstrated that mouse beta-defensins possess anti-influenza virus activity, suggesting that mouse beta-defensins might be used as agents to prevent and treat influenza.
Archives of Virology 02/2009; 154(4):639-47. · 2.03 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In order to explore the feasibility and protective efficiency of influenza DNA vaccine, we constructed eukaryotic expressing plasmids encoding HA and HA1 of influenza A virus (A/PR/8/34) and studied their expression in HEK293 cells. HA and HA1 genes were amplified by RT-PCR and cloned into pcDNA3.1(+) to generate pcDNA3.1(+)/HA and pcDNA3.1(+)/HA1, respectively. After verification of the cloning fidelity by restriction endonuclease digestion, PCR, and sequencing, pcDNA3.1(+)/HA and pcDNA3.1(+)/HA1 were transfected into HEK293 cells using PolyFect Transfection Reagent. Immunofluorescence assay was used to detect the transient expressing cells. Fluorescence microscopy revealed strong expression of target gene in HEK293 cells transiently transfected with either pcDNA3.1(+)/HA or pcDNA3.1(+)/HA1. Therefore, the results confirm the successful construction of eukaryotic expressing plasmids capable of driving the eukaryotic expression of influenza virus antigen HA and HA1, which is likely to provide a basis for both further investigation of the mechanism of influenza viral infection and the development of influenza DNA vaccine.
Journal of Huazhong University of Science and Technology 02/2006; 26(2):225-7, 230. · 0.58 Impact Factor