Aims: To investigate whether Vibrio vulnificus metalloprotease (VvpE) can induce the production of specific anti-VvpE antibody to confer effective protection against Vibrio vulnificus infection and to evaluate the possibility of VvpE as a potential vaccine candidate against disease caused by V. vulnificus.
Methods and Results: The gene encoding the 65-kDa VvpE of V. vulnificus was amplified by PCR and cloned into the expression vector pET21(b). The recombinant VvpE of V. vulnificus was expressed in Escherichia coli BL21(DE3). This His6-tagged VvpE was purified and injected intramuscularly into mice to evaluate its ability to stimulate immune response. Specific antibody levels were measured by ELISA. The 75% protective efficacy of recombinant VvpE was evaluated by active immunization and intraperitoneal challenge with V. vulnificus in mice.
Conclusions: The recombinant His6-tagged VvpE of V. vulnificus is capable of inducing high antibody response in mice to confer effective protection against lethal challenge with V. vulnificus. VvpE might be a potential vaccine candidate to against V. vulnificus infection.
Significance and Impact of the Study: This study uses His6-tagged VvpE to act as vaccine that successfully induces effective and specific anti-VvpE antibody and offers an option for the potential vaccine candidate against V. vulnificus infection.