Evaluation of the goat cellular immune response to rBtuB-Hia-FlgK peptides from Brucella melitensis.
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Brucellosis is a zoonosis caused by Brucella; B. melitensis is the most prevalent species in goats and humans. Previously, three B. melitensis peptides, rBtuB-Hia-FlgK showed antigen-specific immune responses in rodent models. The goal of this study was to evaluate the goat Th1/Th2 immune response to B. melitensis peptides. Twenty-eight animals were separated into four groups and were immunized with the rBtuB-Hia-FlgK peptides cocktail, adjuvant, PBS and Rev-1 vaccine, respectively. Peripheral blood samples were collected on days 0, 15, and 80 post-inoculation. The CD4+ and CD8+ T cells proliferation, and cytokine production of the Th-1 (IL-2, IL-12, TNF-, and IFN-) and Th-2 profiles (IL-4, IL-5, and IL-10) were evaluated. An increase of CD4+/CD8+ at 15 days post-vaccination was observed and continued until the 80th. In addition, the IFN-, TNF-, and IL-2 mRNA expression were typically induced by the 15th day, but only IFN- levels were observed at day 80 post-immunization. Brucella pathogenesis is distinguished by the presence of a large amount of Th-1 cytokines. Although a reduced amount of IFN- in the culture supernatant was accurately detected compared with Rev-1 after 15 days, it could be influenced by the sampling schedule, as a higher cytokine production might be induced as early as the first-week post-vaccination. The results indicate that rBtuB-Hia-FlgK induced an immune response similar to the Rev-1 vaccine. The possible use of inert molecules with the unique ability to typically induce cellular response similar to attenuated vaccine represents an attractive option that should not be ruled out.