Immunization with virus-like particles conjugated to CIDRα1 domain of Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 induces inhibitory antibodies

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

BACKGROUND: During the erythrocytic cycle, Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites express P. falciparum Erythrocyte Membrane Protein 1 (PfEMP1) that anchor the infected erythrocytes (IE) to the vascular lining of the host. The CIDRα1 domain of PfEMP1 is responsible for binding host endothelial protein C receptor (EPCR), and increasing evidence support that this interaction triggers severe malaria, accounting for the majority of malaria-related deaths. In high transmission regions, children develop immunity to severe malaria after the first few infections. This immunity is believed to be mediated by antibodies targeting and inhibiting PfEMP1, causing infected erythrocytes to circulate and be cleared in the spleen. The development of immunity to malaria coincides with acquisition of broad antibody reactivity across the CIDRα1 protein family. Altogether, this identifies CIDRα1 as an important vaccine target. However, the antigenic diversity of the CIDRα1 domain family is a challenge for vaccine development.

METHODS: Immune responses in mice vaccinated with Virus-Like Particles (VLP) presenting CIDRα1 antigens were investigated. Antibody reactivity was tested to a panel of recombinant CIDRα1 domains, and the antibodies ability to inhibit EPCR binding by the recombinant CIDRα1 domains was tested in Luminex-based multiplex assays.

RESULTS: VLP-presented CIDRα1.4 antigens induced a rapid and strong IgG response capable of inhibiting EPCR-binding of multiple CIDRα1 domains mainly within the group A CIDRα1.4-7 subgroups.

CONCLUSIONS: The study observations mirror those from previous CIDRα1 vaccine studies using other vaccine constructs and platforms. This suggests that broad CIDRα1 antibody reactivity may be achieved through vaccination with a limited number of CIDRα1 variants. In addition, this study suggest that this may be achieved through vaccination with a human compatible VLP vaccine platform.

Original languageEnglish
Article number132
JournalMalaria Journal
Issue number1
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Number of downloads are based on statistics from Google Scholar and

No data available

ID: 238973839