Live Attenuated Francisella novicida Vaccine Protects against Francisella tularensis Pulmonary Challenge in Rats and Non-human Primates

Ping Chu, Aimee L. Cunningham, Jieh Juen Yu, Jesse Q. Nguyen, Jeffrey R. Barker, C. Rick Lyons, Julie Wilder, Michelle Valderas, Robert L. Sherwood, Bernard P. Arulanandam, Karl E. Klose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Scopus citations

Abstract

Francisella tularensis causes the disease tularemia. Human pulmonary exposure to the most virulent form, F. tularensis subsp. tularensis (Ftt), leads to high morbidity and mortality, resulting in this bacterium being classified as a potential biothreat agent. However, a closely-related species, F. novicida, is avirulent in healthy humans. No tularemia vaccine is currently approved for human use. We demonstrate that a single dose vaccine of a live attenuated F. novicida strain (Fn iglD) protects against subsequent pulmonary challenge with Ftt using two different animal models, Fischer 344 rats and cynomolgus macaques (NHP). The Fn iglD vaccine showed protective efficacy in rats, as did a Ftt iglD vaccine, suggesting no disadvantage to utilizing the low human virulent Francisella species to induce protective immunity. Comparison of specific antibody profiles in vaccinated rat and NHP sera by proteome array identified a core set of immunodominant antigens in vaccinated animals. This is the first report of a defined live attenuated vaccine that demonstrates efficacy against pulmonary tularemia in a NHP, and indicates that the low human virulence F. novicida functions as an effective tularemia vaccine platform.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalPLoS Pathogens
Volume10
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Virology

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