Antiserum against Escherichia coli J5 contains antibodies reactive with outer membrane proteins of heterologous gram-negative bacteria
Bacterial Outer Membrane Proteins
The binding of IgG in antiserum to Escherichia coli J5 to the surface of Enterobacteriaceae and to cell wall fragments released from serum-exposed bacteria was studied in a search for potentially protective epitopes other than lipopolysaccharide (LPS). IgG titers to multiple heterologous gram-negative smooth bacteria increased following incubation of the bacteria in serum and decreased following absorption with serum-exposed heterologous bacteria. IgG eluted from absorbing bacteria bound to at least three conserved bacterial outer membrane proteins (OMPs), but not LPS, as assessed by immunoblotting. The same OMPs were present in LPS-containing macromolecular cell wall fragments released by incubation of heterologous gram-negative bacteria in human serum. Part of the protection offered by J5 antiserum could be from binding of IgG to conserved OMPs at the bacterial surface or to OMPs in cell-wall fragments released from dying bacteria.