Evaluation of immunogenicity and cross-reactive responses of vaccines prepared from two chimeric serotype O foot-and-mouth disease viruses in pigs and cattle
Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) remains a very serious barrier to agricultural development and the international trade of animals and animal products. Recently, serotype O has been the most prevalent FMDV serotype in China, and it has evolved into four different lineages: O/SEA/Mya-98, O/ME-SA/PanAsia, O/ME-SA/Ind-2001 and O/Cathay. PanAsia-2, belonging to the O/ME-SA topotype, is prevalent in neighbouring countries and poses the risk of cross-border spread in China. This study aimed to develop a promising vaccine candidate strain that can not only provide the best protection against all serotype O FMDVs circulating in China but also be used as an emergency vaccine for the prevention and control of transboundary incursion of PanAsia-2. Here, two chimeric FMDVs (rHN/TURVP1 and rHN/NXVP1) featuring substitution of VP1 genes of the O/TUR/5/2009 vaccine strain (PanAsia-2) and O/NXYCh/CHA/2018 epidemic strain (Mya98) were constructed and evaluated. The biological properties of the two chimeric FMDVs were similar to those of the wild-type (wt) virus despite slight differences in plaque sizes observed in BHK-21 cells. The structural protein-specific antibody titres induced by the rHN/TURVP1 and wt virus vaccines in pigs and cows were higher than those induced by the rHN/NXVP1 vaccine at 28-56 dpv. The vaccines prepared from the two chimeric viruses and wt virus all induced the production of protective cross-neutralizing antibodies against the viruses of the Mya-98, PanAsia and Ind-2001 lineages in pigs and cattle at 28 dpv; however, only the animals vaccinated with the rHN/TURVP1 vaccine produced a protective immune response to the field isolate of the Cathay lineage at 28 dpv, whereas the animals receiving the wt virus and the rHN/NXVP1 vaccines did not, although the wt virus and O/GXCX/CHA/2018 both belong to the Cathay topotype. This study will provide very useful information to help develop a potential vaccine candidate for the prevention and control of serotype O FMD in China.