Endotoxicity does not limit the use of bacterial ghosts as candidate vaccines

Autoren:Mader, H J; Szostak, M P; Hensel, A; Lubitz, W; Haslberger, A G

Gram-negative bacterial ghosts produced by controlled expression of the plasmid-encoded lysis gene E offers a promising approach in non-living vaccine technology. Bacterial cell wall complex and hence the antigenic determinants of the living cells are not affected by denaturation due to cell killing. However, the endotoxin content of the Gram-negative cell wall has been discussed as a potential problem for this kind of whole cell or envelope vaccines. Here we show that bacterial ghosts prepared from Escherichia coli O26:B6 and Salmonella typhimurium C5 induce dose-dependent antibody responses against bacterial cells or their corresponding lipopolysaccharides (LPS) in doses 25 ng kg-1 when administered intravenously to rabbits in a standard immunization protocol. No differences between the immune responses of the rabbits were observed when comparing equivalent doses of bacterial ghosts and antibiotic-treated whole cells. The results indicate that the bacterial ghosts exhibit all the antigenic properties of the living cells. No significant fever responses in rabbits have been recorded in doses of < 250 ng kg-1 E. coli O26:B6 ghosts and up to doses of 250 ng kg-1 S. typhimurium C5 ghosts when applying test methods recommended by the US pharmacopoeia. These findings correlate with cell culture experiments where doses 100 ng ml-1 of bacterial ghosts were needed for the release of tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF alpha) and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) from RAW mouse macrophage cultures. Free LPS of Salmonella abortus equi commonly used as a LPS-standard, however, stimulated TNF alpha and PGE2 synthesis of RAW cells in doses of 1 ng ml-1. The endotoxic activity of our bacterial preparations analysed by a standard limulus amoebocyte lysate and 2-keto-3-deoxyoctonate assay correlated with the capacity to stimulate the release of PGE2 and TNF alpha in RAW mouse macrophage cultures and the endotoxic responses in rabbits. It can be concluded that these in vitro systems can be used as easy predictive test systems for preparations of bacterial vaccines, particularly for bacterial ghosts.

Anzahl der Seiten:8
Peer reviewed:true