Vibrio anguillarum resistance to rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) serum: Role of O-antigen structure of lipopolysaccharide

Henriette Boesen, Karl Pedersen, Jens L. Larsen, Claus Koch, Anthony E. Ellis

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The sensitivity of Vibrio anguillarum to the bactericidal effect of rainbow trout serum was investigated with different strains of serogroups O1 and O2a, which are the most frequently found serogroups in clinical outbreaks of vibriosis. All of the V. anguillarum strains were able to activate complement in rainbow trout serum, but smooth strains of V. anguillarum serogroup O1 were resistant to complement-mediated killing in the absence of specific antibodies. In the case of V. anguillarum serogroup O2a strains, 80% of the analyzed strains were resistant to rainbow trout serum even when specific antibodies were present. Analysis of the lipopolysaccharide structures of the tested V. anguillarum strains showed a positive correlation between the O-antigen size of the lipopolysaccharide and resistance to serum killing, The classical complement pathway was responsible for the antibody-dependent serum killing of susceptible V. anguillarum strains. When serum-resistant V. anguillarum serogroup O2a strains were grown in glucose-enriched Lennox L broth, they produced lipopolysaccharide molecules with fewer high-molecular-weight O-antigen units than did strains grown in broth without the addition of glucose. Strains grown in glucose-enriched medium became sensitive to rainbow trout serum killing, indicating that the high-molecular-weight O-antigen side chains prevented the activated complement from damaging the bacterium.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInfection and Immunity
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)294-301
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Bacterial
  • Blood Bactericidal Activity
  • Complement Activation
  • Complement System Proteins
  • Hemolysis
  • Immunity, Innate
  • Lipopolysaccharides
  • O Antigens
  • Oncorhynchus mykiss
  • Serotyping
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Vibrio
  • 9007-36-7 Complement System Proteins
  • lipopolysaccharide
  • antibiotic resistance
  • antibody specificity
  • antigen specificity
  • antigenicity
  • article
  • bactericidal activity
  • cell killing
  • complement activation
  • complement dependent cytotoxicity
  • human cell
  • nonhuman
  • phagocytosis
  • priority journal
  • rainbow trout
  • seroconversion
  • vibrio
  • Immunity, Natural
  • FISH
  • Facultatively Anaerobic Gram-Negative Rods Eubacteria Bacteria Microorganisms (Bacteria, Eubacteria, Microorganisms) - Vibrionaceae [06704] Vibrio anuillarum pathogen, serovar-O1, serovar-O2a
  • Pisces Vertebrata Chordata Animalia (Animals, Chordates, Fish, Nonhuman Vertebrates, Vertebrates) - Osteichthyes [85206] Oncorhynchus mykiss
  • glucose 50-99-7Q, 58367-01-4Q
  • lipopolysaccharide O-antigen structure
  • 10060, Biochemistry studies - General
  • 30000, Bacteriology, general and systematic
  • 36001, Medical and clinical microbiology - General and methods
  • Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics


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