Modified-live feline calicivirus vaccination elicits cellular immunity against a current feline calicivirus field strain in an experimental geline challenge study

Spiri, A. M., Novacco, M., Meli, M. L., Stirn, M., Riond, B., Fogle, J. E., Boretti, F. S., Herbert, I., Hosie, M. J. and Hofmann-Lehmann, R. (2021) Modified-live feline calicivirus vaccination elicits cellular immunity against a current feline calicivirus field strain in an experimental geline challenge study. Viruses, 13(9), 1736. (doi: 10.3390/v13091736)

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Abstract

Feline calicivirus (FCV) is a common cat virus associated with oral ulcerations and virulent-systemic disease. Efficacious FCV vaccines protect against severe disease but not against infection. The high genetic diversity of FCV poses a challenge in vaccine design. Protection against FCV has been related to humoral and cellular immunity; the latter has not been studied in detail. This study investigates the cellular and humoral immune response of specified pathogen-free (SPF) cats after modified-live FCV F9 vaccinations and two heterologous FCV challenges by the analysis of lymphocyte subsets, cytokine mRNA transcription levels, interferon (IFN)-γ release assays in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), anti-FCV antibodies, and neutralisation activity. Vaccinated cats developed a Th1 cytokine response after vaccination. Vaccination resulted in antibodies with neutralising activity against the vaccine but not the challenge viruses. Remarkably, IFN-γ-releasing PBMCs were detected in vaccinated cats upon stimulation with the vaccine strain and the first heterologous FCV challenge strain. After the first experimental infection, the mRNA transcription levels of perforin, granzyme B, INF-γ, and antiviral factor MX1 and the number of IFN-γ-releasing PBMCs when stimulated with the first challenge virus were higher in vaccinated cats compared to control cats. The first FCV challenge induced crossneutralising antibodies in all cats against the second challenge virus. Before the second challenge, vaccinated cats had a higher number of IFN-γ-releasing PBMCs when stimulated with the second challenge virus than control cats. After the second FCV challenge, there were less significant differences detected between the groups regarding lymphocyte subsets and cytokine mRNA transcription levels. In conclusion, modified-live FCV vaccination induced cellular but not humoral crossimmunity in SPF cats; innate immune mechanisms, secretory and membranolytic pathways, and IFN-γ-releasing PBMCs seem to be important in the host immune defence against FCV.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:A.M.S. was partly funded by the research grant (Forschungskredit) of the University of Zurich, grant number FK-53210-01-01 and by the research grant from the foundation “Stiftung für Kleintiere” of the Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Zurich. I.H. and M.J.H. were supported by an Industrial Partnership Ph.D. Award funded by the University of Glasgow and Merial.
Keywords:Crossneutralisation, crossimmunity, lymphocyte subsets, neutralising antibodies, cytokines, IFN-γ, perforin, granzyme B, antiviral factor MX1, ELISpot.
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Hosie, Professor Margaret and Herbert, Miss Imogen
Creator Roles:
Herbert, I.Methodology, Writing – review and editing
Hosie, M. J.Methodology, Writing – review and editing, Supervision
Authors: Spiri, A. M., Novacco, M., Meli, M. L., Stirn, M., Riond, B., Fogle, J. E., Boretti, F. S., Herbert, I., Hosie, M. J., and Hofmann-Lehmann, R.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
Journal Name:Viruses
Publisher:MDPI
ISSN:1999-4915
ISSN (Online):1999-4915
Published Online:31 August 2021
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2021 The Authors
First Published:First published in Viruses 13(9): 1736
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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