Evaluation of Immunoprotective Activity of Six Leptospiral Proteins in the Hamster Model of Leptospirosis

Marina V Atzingen1, Mônica L Vieira1, 3, Rosane Oliveira1, 3, Renan F Domingos1, 3, Renata S Mendes1, 3, Aline T Barros1, Amane P Gonçales2, Zenaide M de Morais2, Silvio A Vasconcellos2, Ana LTO Nascimento1, 3, *
1 Centro de Biotecnologia, Instituto Butantan, Avenida Vital Brazil, 1500, 05503-900, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
2 Laboratório de Zoonoses Bacterianas do VPS, Faculdade de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia, USP, Avenida Prof. Dr. Orlando Marques de Paiva, 87, 05508-270, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
3 Interunidades em Biotecnologia, Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas, USP, Avenida Prof. Lineu Prestes, 1730, 05508-900, São Paulo, SP, Brazil

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© Atzingen et al.; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Centro de Biotecnologia, Instituto Butantan, Avenida Vital Brazil, 1500, 05503-900, São Paulo, SP, Brazil; Tel: (5511) 37220019; Fax: (5511) 37261505; E-mail:


Leptospirosis is a worldwide zoonosis caused by pathogenic Leptospira. The whole-genome sequence of L. interrogans serovar Copenhageni together with bioinformatics tools represent a great opportunity to search for novel antigen candidates that could be used as subunit vaccine against leptospirosis. We focused on six genes encoding for conserved hypothetical proteins predicted to be exported to the outer membrane. The genes were amplified by PCR from Leptospira interrogans genomic DNA and were cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli. The recombinant proteins tagged with N-terminal hexahistidine were purified by metal-charged chromatography. The immunization of hamsters followed by challenge with lethal dose of virulent strain of Leptospira showed that the recombinant proteins Lsa21, Lsa66 and rLIC11030 elicited partial protection to animals. These proteins could be used combined or in a mixture with novel adjuvants in order to improve their effectiveness.

Keywords: : Leptospira interrogans, leptospirosis, recombinant protein, vaccine.