Characterization of Extracellular Vesicles Secreted by a Clinical Isolate of Naegleria fowleri and Identification of Immunogenic Components within Their Protein Cargo
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Extracellular vesiclesNaegleria fowleriCharacterizationImmunogenicProteasesProteome
Retana Moreira, L.; Steller Espinoza, M.F.; Chacón, Camacho, N.; Cornet-Gomez, A.; Sáenz-Arce, G.; Osuna, A.; Lomonte, B.; Abrahams Sandí, E. Characterization of Extracellular Vesicles Secreted by a Clinical Isolate of Naegleria fowleri and Identification of Immunogenic Components within Their Protein Cargo. Biology 2022, 11, 983. [https://doi.org/10.3390/biology11070983]
SponsorshipVicerrectoría de Investigación” of the Universidad de Costa Rica by supporting the research projects C-1061: “Caracterización de antígenos de excreción/ secreción y antígenos somáticos en amebas de vida libre mediante empleo de anticuerpos policlonales producidos en roedores” and C-2600: “Secreción de vesículas extracelulares por Naegleria fowleri y evaluación de su potencial rol inmunomodulador en un modelo in vitro”
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are small lipid vesicles released by both prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, involved in intercellular communication, immunomodulation and pathogenesis. In this study, we performed a characterization of the EVs produced by trophozoites of a clinical isolate of the free-living amoeba Naegleria fowleri (N. fowleri). Size distribution, zeta potential, protein profile and protease activity were analyzed. Under our incubation conditions, EVs of different sizes were observed, with a predominant population ranging from 206 to 227 nm. SDS-PAGE revealed protein bands of 25 to 260 KDa. The presence of antigenic proteins was confirmed byWestern blot, which evidenced strongest recognition by rat polyclonal antibodies raised against N. fowleri in the region close to 80 KDa and included peptidases, as revealed by zymography. Proteins in selected immunorecognized bands were further identified using nano-ESI-MS/MS. A preliminary proteomic profile of the EVs identified at least 184 proteins as part of the vesicles’ cargo. Protease activity assays, in combination with the use of inhibitors, revealed the predominance of serine proteases. The present characterization uncovers the complexity of EVs produced by N. fowleri, suggesting their potential relevance in the release of virulence factors involved in pathogenicity. Owing to their cargo’s diversity, further research on EVs could reveal new therapeutic targets or biomarkers for developing rapid and accurate diagnostic tools for lethal infections such as the one caused by this amoeba.