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Recombinant outer surface protein a from Borrelia burgdorferi induces antibodies protective against spirochetal infection in mice.


The outer surface protein A (OspA) of Borrelia burgdorferi was isolated in its native form from strains ZS7 and B31 and as a recombinant protein from strain ZS7. Amino acid sequence analysis of internal peptides of native OspA (strain ZS7) revealed identity with the sequence deduced from the OspA gene. Repeated immunization of C57BL/6 and C.B-17 mice with any of the three OspA structures resulted in the generation of monospecific hyperimmune sera reactive with both native and recombinant OspA. Upon transfer of immune sera specific for either native OspA (strain B31) or recombinant OspA (strain ZS7) but not of those reactive with the recombinant 41-kDa flagellin-associated antigen, severe combined immunodeficient (SCID) mice were completely protected against infection with strain ZS7. The finding that monoclonal antibodies to OspA and to OspB but not to non-outer surface spirochetal structures such as flagellin, p20, p65, and p70 conferred protection in SCID mice makes OspA (and possibly OspB) a promising candidate vaccine against
Lyme disease.

J Infect Dis. 1991 Jul;164(1):123-32. Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov’t [1]