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ABSTRACT: Genotype E of small ruminant lentivirus has been recently described in goats from different breeds in Italy. Genotype E infection may differ from known genotypes since deletions of dUTPase and VPR proteins have been confirmed in different independent areas and goat breed, and play a key role on virus replication and pathogenesis. In particular, genotype E Roccaverano strain has been described as low pathogenic since does not lead to clinical symptoms in goats. In contrast, classical CAEV infected goats of the same area and breed presented arthritis. In this study, we have used intratracheal and intra-bone marrow routes to establish genotype E persistent infections. Humoral and cellular immune responses elicited in the host against genotype E and genotype B derived antigens were evaluated until 200 days post-inoculation. Compared to genotype B antigen, seroconversion against genotype E GAG P16-25 antigen was detected at 2-3 weeks after inoculation, significantly earlier and at higher titres. Interestingly, antibody avidity did not increase in the course of the experiment neither against P16-25 nor against SU5, both derived from genotype E. T cell proliferation against P25-GST fusion protein antigens derived from genotype E was firstly detected at 15 days post-inoculation and was maintained throughout time until week 20 post-infection, while T cell proliferation against the genotype B P25 was not produced by the end of the experiment at 20 weeks post-inoculation. The strength of reaction was also higher when using P25 E as stimulator antigen. In contrast with antibody and T cell proliferation, cytotoxic-T-lymphocyte (CTL) activity in the circulating lymphocytes (effector cells) using blood-derived macrophages (BDM) as target cells, was not strain specific being surprisingly higher against genotype B infected antigen presenting cells (APCs). This is the first study reporting experimentally induced immunological changes in SRLV genotype E infection and indicates that CTL activity may be the adaptive immune response able to induce protection against heterologous infection.
Veterinary Immunology and Immunopathology 02/2011; 139(2-4):237-44. · 1.88 Impact Factor