Antigenic variation among Bordetella: Bordetella bronchiseptica strain MO149 expresses a novel O chain that is poorly immunogenic

Evgeny Vinogradov, Jerry D. King, Ashutosh K. Pathak, Eric T. Harvill, Andrew Preston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


The O chain polysaccharide (O PS) of Bordetella bronchiseptica and Bordetella parapertussis lipopolysaccharide is a homopolymer of 2,3-diacetamido-2,3-dideoxygalacturonic acid (GalNAc3NAcA) in which some of the sugars are present as uronamides. The terminal residue contains several unusual modifications. To date, two types of modification have been characterized, and a survey of numerous strains demonstrated that each contained one of these two modification types. Host antibody responses against the O PS are directed against the terminal residue modifications, and there is little cross-reactivity between the two types. This suggests that Bordetella O PS modifications represent a means of antigenic variation. Here we report the characterization of the O PS of B. bronchiseptica strain MO149. It consists of a novel two-sugar repeating unit and a novel terminal residue modification, with the structure Me-4- α-L-GalNAc3NAcA-(4- β-D-GlcNAc3NAcA-4- α-LGalNAc3NAcA-) 5-6-, which we propose be defined as the B. bronchiseptica O3 PS. We show that the O3 PS is very poorly immunogenic and that the MO149 strain contains a novel wbm (O PS biosynthesis) locus. Thus, there is greater diversity among Bordetella O PSs than previously recognized, which is likely to be a result of selection pressure from host immunity. We also determine experimentally, for the first time, the absolute configuration of the diacetimido-uronic acid sugars in Bordetella O PS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26869-26877
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number35
StatePublished - Aug 27 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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