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Department of Animal Sciences
The Robert H. Smith Faculty
of Agricultural, Food & Environment

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

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Optimized polypeptide for a subunit vaccine against avian reovirus


Goldenberg, D. ; Lublin, A. ; Rosenbluth, E. ; Heller, D. ; Pitcovski, J. Optimized polypeptide for a subunit vaccine against avian reovirus. Vaccine 2016, 34, 3178-3183.


Avian reovirus (ARV) is a disease-causing agent. The disease is prevented by vaccination with a genotype-specific vaccine while many variants of ARV exist in the field worldwide. Production of new attenuated vaccines is a long-term process and in the case of fast-mutating viruses, an impractical one. In the era of molecular biology, vaccines may be produced by using only the relevant protein for induction of neutralizing antibodies, enabling fast adjustment to the emergence of new genetic strains. Sigma C (SC) protein of ARV is a homotrimer that facilitates host-cell attachment and induce the production and secretion of neutralizing antibodies. The aim of this study was to identify the region of SC that will elicit a protective immune response. Full-length (residues 1-326) and two partial fragments of SC (residues 122-326 and 192-326) were produced in Escherichia coli. The SC fragment of residues 122-326 include the globular head, shaft and hinge domains, while eliminating intra-capsular region. This fragment induces significantly higher levels of anti-ARV antibodies than the shorter fragment or full length SC, which neutralized embryos infection by the virulent strain to a higher extent compared with the antibodies produced in response to the whole virus vaccine. Residues 122-326 fragment is assumed to be folded correctly, exposing linear as well as conformational epitopes that are identical to those of the native protein, while possibly excluding suppressor sequences. The results of this study may serve for the development of a recombinant subunit vaccine for ARV. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd.