However, genetically related VP2 proteins 3 and 7, or 5 and 8, (Fig. 2) in each of the cocktails did not increase nAbs titers against their related serotypes. No nAbs were detected against unrelated serotypes (Table 1). Further, nAb titers against each VP2 protein differed strongly after immunization with a cocktail or with single VP2 protein. Non-neutralizing Abs were raised by cocktails of VP2 proteins; i.e. Abs against serotype 4, 5 and 9
by the cocktail of 1, 3, 7, 8, and Abs against serotype 8 by the cocktail of 2, 4, 5, 6, 9 (Table 2). Perhaps, AHSV serotypes have common epitopes on VP2 but these differ in avidity or affinity for these Abs. As a result, binding to epitopes occurs and will immunostain AHSV infected monolayers but this binding will not neutralize AHSV. Currently used cocktails of live-attenuated vaccines (LAVs) induce a broader protection. Even LAV for serotype
VRT752271 5 and 9 are not included, and protection against AHSV-5 and -9 are achieved by serotype-related LAVs for serotype 8 and 6, respectively . However, when using cocktails of LAVs it was also suggested that there are substantial differences in cross-reactivity between serotypes; e.g. cross-reactivity between AHSV-5 and -8 seems to be stronger than between AHSV-6 and -9 . Importantly, undesirable events such as reversion to virulence and reassortment between LAVs or with field virus are highly Histone Demethylase inhibitor likely. Furthermore, LAVs induce an immune response against all viral proteins and are therefore not ‘DIVA’ (differentiating infected from vaccinated animals)
vaccines. In contrast, VP2 subunit vaccine induces Abs solely against VP2, and horses vaccinated with VP2 subunit vaccines should therefore be seronegative for VP7 antibodies. An AHSV infection results rapidly in seroconversion for VP7 antibody and VP7 is the target for several commercially available tests to detect AHSV infections. DIVA testing by these commercially available tests will be Megestrol Acetate very supportive in combination with vaccination with VP2 subunit vaccine. Thus, rapid control of AHS outbreaks as well as confirming the virus-free status of animals for international movements irrespective of the vaccination status can be achieved with the current available and extensively validated VP7 ELISA. In summary, we demonstrated that multi-serotype VP2 subunit vaccines for AHS are potentially feasible, as shown here by immunization of guinea pigs as an alternative animal model. The guinea pig model can be initially used for immunogenicity studies in order to reduce experiments in horses. The considerable difference in immunogenicity between VP2 proteins in guinea pigs has to be taken into account and should be investigated further prior to the formulation of single as well as cocktail VP2 subunit vaccines for African horse sickness.