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Protection of outbred mice against a vaginal challenge by a Chlamydia trachomatis serovar E recombinant major outer membrane protein vaccine is dependent on phosphate substitution in the adjuvant.

  • Author(s): Pal, Sukumar
  • Ausar, Salvador Fernando
  • Tifrea, Delia F
  • Cheng, Chunmei
  • Gallichan, Scott
  • Sanchez, Violette
  • de la Maza, Luis M
  • Visan, Lucian
  • et al.

Chlamydia trachomatis is the most common bacterial sexually-transmitted pathogen for which there is no vaccine. We previously demonstrated that the degree of phosphate substitution in an aluminum hydroxide adjuvant in a TLR-4-based C. trachomatis serovar E (Ser E) recombinant major outer membrane protein (rMOMP) formulation had an impact on the induced antibody titers and IFN-γ levels. Here, we have extended these observations using outbreed CD-1 mice immunized with C. trachomatis Ser E rMOMP formulations to evaluate the impact on bacterial challenge. The results confirmed that the rMOMP vaccine containing the adjuvant with the highest phosphate substitution induced the highest neutralizing antibody titers while the formulation with the lowest phosphate substitution induced the highest IFN-γ production. The most robust protection was observed in mice vaccinated with the formulation containing the adjuvant with the lowest phosphate substitution, as shown by the number of mice with positive vaginal cultures, number of positive cultures and number of C. trachomatis inclusion forming units recovered. This is the first report showing that vaccination of an outbred strain of mice with rMOMP induces protection against a vaginal challenge with C. trachomatis.

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