Lack of neutralization of Chlamydia trachomatis infection by high avidity monoclonal antibodies to surface-exposed major outer membrane protein variable domain IV

Laura Lind Throne Degn, Ditte Bech, Gunna Christiansen, Svend Birkelund*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

32 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Chlamydia trachomatis is the leading cause of sexually transmitted diseases causing frequent, long-lasting, and often asymptomatic recurrent infections resulting in severe reproductive complications. C. trachomatis is an intracellular Gram-negative bacterium with a biphasic developmental cycle in which extracellular, infectious elementary bodies (EB) alternate with the intracellular replicating reticulate bodies (RB). The outer membrane of EB consists of a tight disulfide cross-linking protein network. The most essential protein is the 42 kDa major outer membrane protein (MOMP) that contributes to the rigid structural integrity of the outer membrane. MOMP is a transmembrane protein with a β-barrel structure consisting of four variable domains (VD) separated by five constant domains. VDIV possesses surface-exposed species-specific epitopes recognized by the immune system and, therefore, functions as a candidate for vaccine development. To analyze the protective contribution of antibodies for a MOMP vaccine, we investigated the specificity and binding characteristics of two monoclonal antibodies (MAb)224.2 and MAb244.4 directed against C. trachomatis serovar D MOMP. By immunoelectron microscopy, we found that both MAb bind to the surface of C. trachomatis EB. By epitope mapping, we characterized the MOMP epitope as linear consisting of 6 amino acids: 322TIAGAGD328. By ELISA it was shown that both antibodies bind with a higher avidity to the chlamydial surface compared to binding to monomeric MOMP, indicating that the antibodies bind divalently to the surface of C. trachomatis EB. Despite strong binding to the chlamydial surface, the antibodies only partially reduced the infectivity. This may be explained by the observation that even though both MAb covered the EB surface, antibodies could not be regularly detected on EB after the uptake into the host cell.

Original languageEnglish
JournalMolecular Immunology
Volume163
Pages (from-to)163-173
Number of pages11
ISSN0161-5890
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2023

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2023 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Chlamydia trachomatis
  • Major outer membrane protein (MOMP)
  • Monoclonal antibody avidity
  • Neutralization

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Lack of neutralization of Chlamydia trachomatis infection by high avidity monoclonal antibodies to surface-exposed major outer membrane protein variable domain IV'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this