Ruminants are an important reservoir of Escherichia coli O157:H7. To reduce E coli O157:H7 excretion by these animals could play a key role in prevention and control of human infections. In the present study, the authors used 12 three-month-old goats to evaluate the efficacy of intranasal administration of the Stx2B-Tir-Stx1B-Zot protein. These goats were inoculated on days 0 and 21 and infected with 1010 colony-forming units (cfu) of E coli O157:H7 by oral inoculation on day 36. Faecal shedding was monitored daily for two weeks. All of six goats immunised with recombinant protein elicited significant Stx2b-Tir-Stx1b-Zot-specific serum IgG antibodies, and three of them also showed production of antigen-specific IgA in faeces. The immunised goats showed much less shedding of E coli O157:H7 after challenge. These results demonstrate the potential for the use of Stx2B-Tir-Stx1B-Zot protein in mucosal vaccine formulations to prevent colonisation and shedding of E coli O157:H7 in goats.
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