Measurement of the human immune response to meningococcal lipooligosaccharide antigens by using serum to inhibit monoclonal antibody binding to purified lipooligosaccharide

M. M. Estabrook, R. E. Mandrell, M. A. Apicella, J. McLeod Griffiss

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Abstract

We developed a human inhibition monoclonal enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (HIMELISA) to investigate the human immune response to the lipooligosaccharides (LOS) of Neisseria meningitidis. Monoclonal antibodies (MAb) were used to define seven epitopes on four LOS molecules of a meningococcal strain (126E) previously shown to express immunogenic LOS epitopes. The assay could distinguish epitope-specific antibody within whole sera. Neither the specificity nor the amount of the antibody measured by HIMELISA in sera of vaccinates changed during the immune response to meningococcal capsular polysaccharides, a chemically unrelated antigen. By using the HIMELISA, it was determined that sera from adults convalescing from meningococcal disease strongly inhibited MAb binding to two of the seven defined epitopes. The 3.6-kilodalton LOS of strain 126E expressed both of these epitopes. In addition, one of the inhibited epitopes was also expressed on the 4.0-kilodalton LOS of strain 126E. The convalscent-phase sera inhibited MAb binding to these two epitopes when they were expressed on LOS of diverse meningococcal strains. An acute-phase serum blocked MAb to the two epitopes to a lesser degree than did a convalescent-phase serum from the same patient. Immunoblotting the sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis-separated LOS with convalescent-phase sera confirmed the specificity of the human anti-LOS antibody identifieid by HIMELISA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2204-2213
Number of pages10
JournalInfection and immunity
Volume58
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1990

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