is a Gram-negative bacterium that causes high mortality in different fish species and at different growth stages. Although vaccination has significantly contributed to the decline of disease outbreaks in aquaculture, the use of oral vaccines has lagged behind the injectable
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is a Gram-negative bacterium that causes high mortality in different fish species and at different growth stages. Although vaccination has significantly contributed to the decline of disease outbreaks in aquaculture, the use of oral vaccines has lagged behind the injectable vaccines due to lack of proven efficacy, that being from primary immunization or by use of boost protocols. In this study, the outer membrane protein W (OmpW) of A. hydrophila
was cloned, purified, and encapsulated in poly d,l
-glycolic acid (PLGA) nanoparticles (NPs) for oral vaccination of rohu (Labeo rohita
Hamilton). The physical properties of PLGA NPs encapsulating the recombinant OmpW (rOmpW) was characterized as having a diameter of 370–375 nm, encapsulation efficiency of 53% and −19.3 mV zeta potential. In vitro
release of rOmpW was estimated at 34% within 48 h of incubation in phosphate-buffered saline. To evaluate the efficacy of the NP-rOmpW oral vaccine, two antigen doses were orally administered in rohu with a high antigen (HiAg) dose that had twice the amount of antigens compared to the low antigen (LoAg) dose. Antibody levels obtained after vaccination showed an antigen dose dependency in which fish from the HiAg group had higher antibody levels than those from the LoAg group. The antibody levels corresponded with post challenge survival proportions (PCSPs) and relative percent survival (RPS) in which the HiAg group had a higher PCSP and RPS than the LoAg group. Likewise, the ability to inhibit A. hydrophila
growth on trypticase soy agar (TSA) by sera obtained from the HiAg group was higher than that from the LoAg group. Overall, data presented here shows that OmpW orally administered using PLGA NPs is protective against A. hydrophila
infection with the level of protective immunity induced by oral vaccination being antigen dose-dependent. Future studies should seek to optimize the antigen dose and duration of oral immunization in rohu in order to induce the highest protection in vaccinated fish.