Molecular characterization of a novel microneme antigen in Neospora caninum.

Sonda, S; Fuchs, N; Gottstein, Bruno; Hemphill, Andrew (2000). Molecular characterization of a novel microneme antigen in Neospora caninum. Molecular and biochemical parasitology, 108(1), pp. 39-51. Elsevier

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The apical complex of the parasites belonging to the phylum Sporozoa is believed to be critically involved in the events leading to host cell invasion. The characterization of the components of this subcellular structure is therefore an important step towards understanding how these parasites achieve host cell entry. Affinity-purification of an anti-Neospora caninum antiserum on a reactive protein band of approximately 40 kDa following Triton-X-114 extraction of parasite proteins, SDS-PAGE and Western blotting, yielded an immunoglobulin fraction which, by immunofluorescence, stained predominantly the apical portion of N. caninum tachyzoites. Following immunoscreening of a N. caninum tachyzoite lambdagt22 cDNA expression library, the respective full length cDNA sequence was determined. This sequence was found to encode a protein of 362 amino acids, with a calculated Mr of 38086. This protein is encoded by a single copy gene which produces a transcript of 2.4 kb. Sequence analysis showed that it contains a N-terminal putative signal peptide sequence and two potential membrane spanning regions. Four consecutive epidermal growth factor like domains were identified, as well a conserved sequence motif for binding of ATP/GTP (P-loop). The full length cDNA was expressed as a recombinant poly-histidine fusion protein in Escherichia coli, and antibodies affinity purified on this protein labelled exclusively a 38 kDa band on immunoblots of N. caninum extracts. In addition, specific labeling of a 45 kDa band in Toxoplasma gondii tachyzoite extracts was observed. By immunofluorescence, these antibodies stained predominantly the apical portion of both N. caninum and T. gondii tachyzoites, but the protein was absent from the parasite surface. Immunogold localization in LR-White embedded N. caninum tachyzoites demonstrated staining of predominantly the apically located micronemes, as well as of dense granules located at the posterior end of the tachyzoites. As evidenced by immunohistochemistry, this Neospora microneme antigen and its immunoreactive counterpart in Toxoplasma appeared to be expressed in both tachyzoite and bradyzoite stages.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP) > Institute of Parasitology

UniBE Contributor:

Gottstein, Bruno and Hemphill, Andrew


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health
600 Technology > 630 Agriculture








Bruno Gottstein

Date Deposited:

23 Jul 2018 09:49

Last Modified:

23 Jul 2018 09:49

PubMed ID:



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