A single gene copy merozoite surface antigen and immune evasion?

O’Dea, K. P. and McKean, Paul G. and Jarra, W. and Brown, K. N. (1996) A single gene copy merozoite surface antigen and immune evasion? Parasite Immunology, 18 (4). pp. 165-172. ISSN 1365-3024

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During the course of chronic malaria infection antigenic variants of a parasite antigen are expressed and exposed on the surface of infected erythrocyte membranes. There also exists a number of apparently invariant single gene copy blood-stage antigens, exposed or non-exposed, which have been shown to afford immunity under experimental conditions. To determine why the host, presented with invariant 'protective' antigens, is unable to control infections effectively, immunity to a representative single gene copy antigen, the merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP1) was investigated in Plasmodium chabaudi chabaudi AS, a murine model of chronic malaria. Immunization with monoclonal antibody affinity purified native MSP1 resulted in enhanced control of parasitaemia on challenge, irrespective of the parasite inoculum size; challenge with a single parasite, however, suggested that expansion of resistant parasite subpopulations was not occurring. Challenge of mice immunized with recombinant fusion proteins encoding N- or C-terminal regions of the P.c. chabaudi AS MSP1 produced inconsistent effects, often parasitaemias were indistinguishable from controls despite significant anti-MSP1 antibody responses. The not unlikely contamination of MSP1 native preparations with erythrocyte (E) components was considered. Immunization with a mixture of the MSP1 C-terminus recombinant polypeptide and a Triton X-100 solubilized lysate of normal E resulted in enhanced control of parasitaemia, however, no effect was seen after administration of either component on its own. Co-immunization of E with the N-terminus polypeptide reversed the inhibition seen, on this occasion with this construct alone.

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Journal Article
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Parasite Immunology
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12 Mar 2009 09:50
Last Modified:
14 Sep 2023 23:44