• Oral vaccination with Salmonella enterica as a cruzipain-DNA delivery system confers protective immunity against Trypanosoma cruzi.

      Cazorla, Silvia I; Becker, Pablo D; Frank, Fernanda M; Ebensen, Thomas; Sartori, María J; Corral, Ricardo S; Malchiodi, Emilio L; Guzmán, Carlos A; Instituto de Estudios de la Inmunidad Humoral, CONICET-UBA, Facultad de Farmacia y Bioquímica, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina. (2008-01)
      To stimulate both local and systemic immune responses against Trypanosoma cruzi, Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium aroA was exploited as a DNA delivery system for cruzipain (SCz). In a murine model we compared SCz alone (GI) or coadministered with Salmonella carrying a plasmid encoding granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GII), as well as protocols in which SCz priming was followed by boosting with recombinant cruzipain (rCz) admixed with either CpG-ODN (GIII) or MALP-2, a synthetic derivative of a macrophage-activating lipopeptide of 2 kDa from Mycoplasma fermentans (GIV). The results showed that protocols that included four oral doses of SCz (GI) elicited mainly a mucosal response characterized by immunoglobulin A (IgA) secretion and proliferation of gut-associated lymphoid tissue cells, with weak systemic responses. In contrast, the protocol that included a boost with rCz plus CpG (GIII) triggered stronger systemic responses in terms of Cz-specific serum IgG titers, splenocyte proliferation, gamma interferon (IFN-gamma) secretion, and delayed-type hypersensitivity response. Trypomastigote challenge of vaccinated mice resulted in significantly lower levels of parasitemia compared to controls. Protection was abolished by depletion of either CD4+ or CD8+ T cells. Parasite control was also evident from the reduction of tissue damage, as revealed by histopathologic studies and serum levels of enzymes that are markers of muscle injury in chronic Chagas' disease (i.e., creatine kinase, aspartate aminotransferase, and lactate dehydrogenase). Enhanced release of IFN-gamma and interleukin-2 was observed in GI and GII upon restimulation of splenocytes in the nonparasitic phase of infection. Our results indicate that Salmonella-mediated delivery of Cz-DNA by itself promotes the elicitation of an immune response that controls T. cruzi infection, thereby reducing parasite loads and subsequent damage to muscle tissues.