Alejandra Habarta

Centro Científico Tecnológico Conicet Comahue, San Carlos de Bariloche, Río Negro, Argentina

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Publications (4)6.18 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Leptospirosis is one of the most widespread zoonosis in the world. The development of a recombinant leptospira vaccine remains a challenge. In this study, we cloned the Leptospira interrogans open reading frame (ORF) coding the external membrane protein LipL32, an immunodominant antigen found in all pathogenic leptospira, downstream of the highly immunogenic cholera toxin B subunit (CTB) ORF. Expression and assembly of the CTB-LipL32 fusion protein into oligomeric structures of pentameric size were observed in soluble fractions by Western blot analysis. The CTB-LipL32 protein demonstrated strong affinity for monosialotetrahexosylgaglioside (GM1-ganglioside) in an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), suggesting that the antigenic sites for binding and proper folding of the pentameric CTB structure were conserved. Furthermore, antisera against LipL32 also recognized the CTB-LipL32 fusion protein, suggesting that LipL32 also conserved its antigenic sites, a fact confirmed by an ELISA assay showing soluble CTB-LipL32 recognition by sera from convalescent patients. In addition, soluble CTB-LipL32 generated higher specific titers in mice immunized without external adjuvant than co-administration of CTB with LipL32. The data presented here provide support for CTB-LipL32 as a promising antigen for use in the control and study of leptospirosis.
    Current Microbiology 02/2011; 62(2):526-31. · 1.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: It has been reported previously that activation of vascular endothelium by outer membrane proteins of the spirochetes Borrelia sp. and Treponema sp. resulted in enhanced expression of endothelial cell adhesion molecules. To investigate the role of leptospiral proteins in this process, a predicted lipoprotein encoded by the gene LIC10365 was selected, which belongs to a paralogous family that presents a domain of unknown function, DUF1565. The LIC10365 gene was cloned and the protein expressed in Escherichia coli C43 (DE3) strain using the vector pAE. The recombinant protein tagged with N-terminal hexahistidine was purified by metal-charged chromatography and was used to assess its ability to activate cultured human umbilical vein endothelial cells. The rLIC10365 activated endothelium in such a manner that E-selectin and intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1) became upregulated in a dose-dependent fashion. The LIC10365-encoded protein was identified in vivo in the renal tubules of animal during experimental infection with Leptospira interrogans. Collectively, these results implicate the LIC10365-coding protein of L. interrogans as a potential effector molecule in the promotion of a host inflammatory response. This is the first report of a leptospiral protein capable of up-regulating the expression of endothelial cell adhesion molecules ICAM-1 and E-selectin.
    FEMS Microbiology Letters 12/2007; 276(2):172-80. · 2.05 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: With the aim to study if selenium (Se) deficiency affects the basal frequency and cardiac response to isoproterenol (ISO), mice were fed a Se-deficient diet (Se-) or the same diet supplemented with 0.2 ppm Se as sodium selenite (Se+) for 4 wk. Atria frequency, cyclic AMP (cAMP) accumulation, nitric oxide synthase (NOS) activity, and beta-adrenoceptor-binding assay were then examined. Results showed that Se-mice have both a reduction in atria frequency as well as in cAMP content but higher NOS activity levels either at basal or after ISO stimulation. These differences were suppressed by feeding Se-mice with a Se-supplemented diet for 1 wk or by inhibition of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS). Alterations observed after ISO stimulation in atria of Se-mice were not related to a beta-adrenoceptor expression modification because specific radioligand-binding parameters in cardiac membranes from Se-mice and Se+ mice were similar. The reduced response on rate and cAMP in atria from Se-mice to direct adenylate cyclase (AC) stimulation by forskolin and the shifted upward levels present in 2-amino-4-methylpyridine-treated Se-mice is in agreement with a negative crosstalk between iNOS activity and AC activity in Se-mice.
    Biological Trace Element Research 02/2007; 117(1-3):127-38. · 1.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: With the aim to study if selenium (Se) deficiency affects the basal frequency and cardiac response to isoproterenol (ISO), mice were fed a Se-deficient diet (Se-) or the same diet supplemented with 0.2 ppm Se as sodium selenite (Se+) during 4 weeks. Atria frequency, cyclic AMP (cAMP) accumulation, nitric oxide synthase activity, and β-adrenoceptor binding assay were then examined. Results showed that Se- mice have both a reduction in atria frequency as well as in cAMP content but higher NOS activity levels either at basal or after ISO stimulation. These differences were suppressed by feeding Se- mice with Se supplemented diet for 1 week or by inhibition of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS). Alterations observed after ISO stimulation in atria of Se- mice were not related to a β-adrenoceptor expression modification since specific radioligand binding parameters in cardiac membranes from Se- mice and Se+ were similar. The reduced response on rate and cAMP in atria from Se- mice to direct adenylate cyclase stimulation by forskolin and the shifted upward levels present in AP-treated Se- mice is in agreement with a negative crosstalk between iNOS activity and AC activity in Se- mice.
    Biological Trace Element Research 01/2007; 117:127-138. · 1.31 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

20 Citations
6.18 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2011
    • Centro Científico Tecnológico Conicet Comahue
      San Carlos de Bariloche, Río Negro, Argentina
  • 2007
    • National University of La Plata
      • Facultad de Ciencias Exactas
      La Plata, Provincia de Buenos Aires, Argentina
    • Academia Nacional de Medicina, Buenos Aires
      Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires F.D., Argentina