Vaccines — Open Access Journal
(Accessed 21 January 2017)
A Protective Vaccine against Chlamydia Genital Infection Using Vault Nanoparticles without an Added Adjuvant
Vaccines 2017, 5(1), 3; doi:10.3390/vaccines5010003 – 19 January 2017
by Janina Jiang, Guangchao Liu, Valerie A. Kickhoefer, Leonard H. Rome, Lin-Xi Li, Stephen J. McSorley and Kathleen A. Kelly
Chlamydia trachomatis genital infection is the most common sexually transmitted bacterial disease, causing a significant burden to females due to reproductive dysfunction. Intensive screening and antibiotic treatment are unable to completely prevent female reproductive dysfunction, thus, efforts have become focused on developing a vaccine. A major impediment is identifying a safe and effective adjuvant which induces cluster of differentiation 4 (CD4) cells with attributes capable of halting genital infection and inflammation. Previously, we described a natural nanocapsule called the vault which was engineered to contain major outer membrane protein (MOMP) and was an effective vaccine which significantly reduced early infection and favored development of a cellular immune response in a mouse model. In the current study, we used another chlamydial antigen, a polymorphic membrane protein G-1 (PmpG) peptide, to track antigen-specific cells and evaluate, in depth, the vault vaccine for its protective capacity in the absence of an added adjuvant. We found PmpG-vault immunized mice significantly reduced the genital bacterial burden and histopathologic parameters of inflammation following a C. muridarum challenge. Immunization boosted antigen-specific CD4 cells with a multiple cytokine secretion pattern and reduced the number of inflammatory cells in the genital tract making the vault vaccine platform safe and effective for chlamydial genital infection. We conclude that vaccination with a Chlamydia-vault vaccine boosts antigen-specific immunities that are effective at eradicating infection and preventing reproductive tract inflammation.