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Home Research Scientific Version Understanding cross-protective natural immunity conferred by Neisseria lactamica to develop meningococcal vaccines.
The purpose of this project is to understand the basis of natural anti-meningococcal immunity that is conferred by infection with N. lactamica. The project takes advantage of i) our recent findings that certain, but not all, strains of this commensal can elicit serum bactericidal activity (SBA) in immunised animals, and ii) samples from ongoing clinical studies (a Phase 1 trial of N. lactamica OMVs and a study on colonisation of human volunteers with N. lactamica) that will provide important information on human responses to N. lactamica. We will characterise the specific immune responses against this commensal that also recognise N. meningitidis antigens by immunoproteome analysis, and will compare the genetic composition of N. lactamica strains that do or do not confer SBA. Identification of antigens that confer cross-protective should contribute to the development of meningococcal vaccines.
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