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Viruses 2018, 10(2), 52; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020052

Protective Immunity Induced by DNA Vaccination against Ranavirus Infection in Chinese Giant Salamander Andrias davidianus

1
State Key Laboratory of Freshwater Ecology and Biotechnology, Institute of Hydrobiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wuhan 430072, China
2
Wang’s Giant Salamander Breeding Professional Cooperative, Shiyan 442013, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 19 December 2017 / Revised: 10 January 2018 / Accepted: 24 January 2018 / Published: 24 January 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Antivirals & Vaccines)
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Abstract

Andrias davidianus ranavirus (ADRV) is an emerging viral pathogen that causes severe systemic hemorrhagic disease in Chinese giant salamanders. There is an urgent need for developing an effective vaccine against this fatal disease. In this study, DNA vaccines containing the ADRV 2L gene (pcDNA-2L) and the 58L gene (pcDNA-58L) were respectively constructed, and their immune protective effects were evaluated in Chinese giant salamanders. In vitro and in vivo expression of the vaccine plasmids were confirmed in transfected cells and muscle tissues of vaccinated Chinese giant salamanders by using immunoblot analysis or RT-PCR. Following ADRV challenge, the Chinese giant salamanders vaccinated with pcDNA-2L showed a relative percent survival (RPS) of 66.7%, which was significant higher than that in Chinese giant salamanders immunized with pcDNA-58L (RPS of 3.3%). Moreover, the specific antibody against ADRV was detected in Chinese giant salamanders vaccinated with pcDNA-2L at 14 and 21 days post-vaccination by indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Transcriptional analysis revealed that the expression levels of immune-related genes including type I interferon (IFN), myxovirus resistance (Mx), major histocompatibility complex class IA (MHC IA), and immunoglobulin M (IgM) were strongly up-regulated after vaccination with pcDNA-2L. Furthermore, vaccination with pcDNA-2L significantly suppressed the virus replication, which was seen by a low viral load in the spleen of Chinese giant salamander survivals after ADRV challenge. These results indicated that pcDNA-2L could induce a significant innate immune response and an adaptive immune response involving both humoral and cell-mediated immunity that conferred effective protection against ADRV infection, and might be a potential vaccine candidate for controlling ADRV disease in Chinese giant salamanders. View Full-Text
Keywords: ranavirus; Andrias davidianus ranavirus; Chinese giant salamander; DNA vaccine; protective immunity ranavirus; Andrias davidianus ranavirus; Chinese giant salamander; DNA vaccine; protective immunity
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Chen, Z.-Y.; Li, T.; Gao, X.-C.; Wang, C.-F.; Zhang, Q.-Y. Protective Immunity Induced by DNA Vaccination against Ranavirus Infection in Chinese Giant Salamander Andrias davidianus. Viruses 2018, 10, 52.

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