Immunisation with recombinant AMA-1 protects mice against infection with Plasmodium chabaudi Academic Article uri icon


  • The Plasmodium merozoite surface antigen apical membrane antigen-1 (AMA-1) has previously been shown to provide partial protection to Saimiri and rhesus monkeys immunised with recombinant Plasmodium fragile or parasite-derived Plasmodium knowlesi AMA-1, respectively. In the study reported here we have used the Plasmodium chabaudi/mouse model system to extend our pre-clinical assessment of an AMA-1 vaccine. We describe here the expression of the full-length Plasmodium chabaudi adami AMA-1 and the P. chabaudi adami AMA-1 ectodomain using both baculovirus and Escherichia coli. The ectodomain expressed in E. coli, which contained an N-terminal hexa-his tag, was purified by Ni-chelate chromatography and refolded in vitro in the presence of oxidised and reduced glutathione to generate intramolecular disulphide bonds. In a series of vaccine trials, in both inbred and outbred mice, highly significant protection was obtained by immunising with the refolded AMA-1 ectodomain. Protection was shown to correlate with antibody response and was dependent on intact disulphide bonds. Passive transfer of antibodies raised in rabbits against the refolded AMA-1 ectodomain was also protective. In view of this demonstration that E. coli expression of a soluble P. chabaudi AMA-1 domain can generate a vaccine that is effective in mice, we are pursuing a similar approach to generating a vaccine against P. falciparum for testing in human volunteers.


  • Anders, Robin F
  • Crewther, Pauline E
  • Edwards, Stirling
  • Margetts, Mai
  • Matthew, Mary LSM
  • Pollock, Bronwyn
  • Pye, David

publication date

  • January 1998