Mol Immunol. 2019 Dec;116:180-190. doi: 10.1016/j.molimm.2019.10.015. Epub 2019 Nov 5.
Infectious pancreatic necrosis virus (IPNV) and infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV) are two common viral pathogens that cause severe economic losses in all salmonid species in culture, but especially in rainbow trout. Although vaccines against both diseases have been commercialized in some countries, no such vaccines are available for them in China. In this study, a recombinant virus was constructed using the IHNV U genogroup Blk94 virus as a backbone vector to express the antigenic gene, VP2, from IPNV via the reverse genetics system. The resulting recombinant virus (rBlk94-VP2) showed stable biological characteristics as confirmed by virus growth kinetic analyses, pathogenicity analyses, indirect immunofluorescence assays and western blotting. Rainbow trout were immunized with rBlk94-VP2 and then challenged with the IPNV ChRtm213 strain and the IHNV Sn1203 strain on day 45 post-vaccination. A significantly higher survival rate against IHNV was obtained in the rBlk94-VP2 group on day 45 post-vaccination (86%) compared with the PBS mock immunized group (2%). Additionally, IPNV loads decreased significantly in the rBlk94-VP2 immunized group in the liver (28.6-fold to 36.5-fold), anterior kidney (21.7-fold to 44.2-fold), and spleen (14.9-fold to 22.7-fold), as compared with the PBS mock control group. The mRNA transcripts for several innate and adaptive immune-related proteins (IFN-γ, IFN-1, Mx-1, CD4, CD8, IgM, and IgT) were also significantly upregulated after rBlk94-VP2 vaccination, and neutralizing antibodies against both IHNV and IPNV were induced on day 45 post-vaccination. Collectively, our results suggest that this recombinant virus could be developed as a vaccine vector to protect rainbow trout against two or more diseases, and our approach lays the foundations for developing live vaccines for rainbow trout.
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Immune responses; Infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus; Infectious pancreatic necrosis virus; Recombinant virus; Reverse genetics