Lack of antigenic diversification of major outer membrane proteins during clonal waves of Neisseria meningitidis serogroup A colonization and disease

Huber, Charlotte A., Pflüger, Valentin, Hamid, Abdul-Wahab M., Forgor, Abudulai A., Hodgson, Abraham, Sié, Ali, Junghanss, Thomas and Pluschke, Gerd (2013) Lack of antigenic diversification of major outer membrane proteins during clonal waves of Neisseria meningitidis serogroup A colonization and disease. Pathogens and Disease, 67 1: 4-10. doi:10.1111/2049-632X.12000


Author Huber, Charlotte A.
Pflüger, Valentin
Hamid, Abdul-Wahab M.
Forgor, Abudulai A.
Hodgson, Abraham
Sié, Ali
Junghanss, Thomas
Pluschke, Gerd
Title Lack of antigenic diversification of major outer membrane proteins during clonal waves of Neisseria meningitidis serogroup A colonization and disease
Formatted title
Lack of antigenic diversification of major outer membrane proteins during clonal waves of Neisseria meningitidis serogroup A colonization and disease
Journal name Pathogens and Disease   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 2049-632X
Publication date 2013-02
Year available 2012
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/2049-632X.12000
Volume 67
Issue 1
Start page 4
End page 10
Total pages 7
Place of publication Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Formatted abstract
In particular in the ‘meningitis belt’ of sub-Saharan Africa, epidemic meningococcal meningitis is a severe public health problem. In the past decades, serogroup A lineages have been the dominant etiologic agents, but also other serogroups have caused outbreaks. A comprehensive vaccine based on subcapsular outer membrane proteins (OMPs) is not available. Here, we have investigated whether meningococcal populations overcome herd immunity by changing antigenic properties of their OMPs. Meningococcal isolates were collected in the context of longitudinal studies in Ghana between 2002 and 2008 and in Burkina Faso between 2006 and 2007. Serogroup A strains isolated during two clonal waves of colonization and disease showed no diversification in the genes encoding their PorA, PorB, and FetA proteins. However, we detected occasional allelic exchange of opa genes, as well as wide variation in the number of intragenic tandem repeats, showing that phase variation of Opa protein expression is a frequent event. Altogether we observed a remarkable antigenic stability of the PorA, PorB and FetA proteins over years. Our results indicate that while herd immunity may be responsible for the disappearance of meningococcal clones over time, it is not a strong driving force for antigenic diversification of the major OMPs analyzed here.
Keyword Neisseria meningitidis
Outer membrane protein
Herd immunity
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Article first published online: 28 NOV 2012

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: UQ Centre for Clinical Research Publications
Official 2013 Collection
 
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Created: Tue, 12 Feb 2013, 15:00:57 EST by Mrs Maureen Pollard on behalf of Paediatrics & Child Health - RBWH