Chapter 16 : Immunity to Infection

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This chapter outlines present knowledge on the immune mechanisms operating against cholera based on studies of experimental animals infected with as well as of humans living in areas where cholera is endemic or convalescing from cholera disease. Owing to the critical role of cholera toxin (CT) in the pathogenesis of O1, much interest has been focused on the importance of antitoxic immunity for protection against cholera. Although lipopolysaccharide (LPS) apparently is responsible for much of the antibacterial cholera immunity induced, both by cholera vaccines and by infection, additional antigens, some of which may be expressed only during certain culture conditions or during growth in the intestine, may contribute to antibacterial protective immunity. The immune responses induced by clinical cholera in humans appear to be very efficient in providing prolonged protective immunity against subsequent infection with O1 bacteria. Symptomatic or asymptomatic infections with in early childhood may result in partial or complete immunity to cholera disease or even infection. Studies of the incidence of diarrhea in breast-fed children also suggest a protective effect of antitoxic as well as antibacterial antibodies in milk against cholera. The protective role of these antibodies has been difficult to assess, e.g., by comparing diarrhea morbidity in breast-fed and bottle-fed children, owing to several confounding factors.

Citation: Svennerholm A, Jonson G, Holmgren J. 1994. Immunity to Infection, p 257-271. In Wachsmuth I, Blake P, Olsvik Ø (ed), and Cholera. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818364.ch16

Key Concept Ranking

Outer Membrane Proteins
Small Intestine
Cell-Mediated Immune Response
Major Histocompatibility Complex
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Figure 1

Immunoblot showing the antibody response after infection with rough O1 (strain 57) against in vivo-grown (vivo) and in vitro-grown (vitro) classical vibrios (Cairo 48). Antigens (one of which was in vivo specific) evoking the strongest responses had molecular masses of 10 to 18 kDa (indicated by arrowheads). The strong reactivity with the 22-kDa area reflects the presence of antibodies cross-reacting with core LPS in both pre- and postimmune sera. Low-molecular-mass references from Bio-Rad are indicated (in kilo-daltons).

Citation: Svennerholm A, Jonson G, Holmgren J. 1994. Immunity to Infection, p 257-271. In Wachsmuth I, Blake P, Olsvik Ø (ed), and Cholera. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818364.ch16
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Table 2

Serum antibody responses to different antigens in Peruvians convalescing from clinical cholera ( )

Citation: Svennerholm A, Jonson G, Holmgren J. 1994. Immunity to Infection, p 257-271. In Wachsmuth I, Blake P, Olsvik Ø (ed), and Cholera. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818364.ch16
Generic image for table
Table 1

Serum antibody responses in rabbits after intestinal infection with smooth and rough V. cholerae O1 and non-O1 V. cholerae

Citation: Svennerholm A, Jonson G, Holmgren J. 1994. Immunity to Infection, p 257-271. In Wachsmuth I, Blake P, Olsvik Ø (ed), and Cholera. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818364.ch16

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