Selection of variant Borrelia burgdorferi isolates from mice immunized with outer surface protein A or B

E. Fikrig, H. Tao, Stephen W Barthold, R. A. Flavell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

A nonclonal population of Borrelia burgdorferi N40 (passage 3) that survived protective immunity following challenge inoculation of outer surface protein (Osp) A- or B-hyperimmunized mice were characterized for the molecular basis of evasion of immunity. Two of six B. burgdorferi isolates, cultured from OspA-immunized mice, had antigenic diversity in the carboxyl terminus of OspA and did not bind to the protective OspA monoclonal antibody designated IXDII. However, OspA-immunized mice challenged with these variants were fully protected. Moreover, B. burgdorferi isolates with a point mutation in ospB, which results in a truncated OspB that does not bind to protective OspB monoclonal antibody 7E6C, were frequently enriched after infection of OspB-immunized mice. These studies suggest that the incomplete efficacy of an OspA- or OspB-based vaccine may be partly due to immunomediated in vivo selective pressure, resulting in the persistence of some spirochetes that do not bind to protective antibodies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1658-1662
Number of pages5
JournalInfection and Immunity
Volume63
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1995
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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