Modulation of the antibody response by Porphyromonas gingivalis and Fusobacterium nucleatum in a mouse model

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Gemmell, E.
Bird, P.
Ford, P.
Ashman, R.
Gosling, P.
Hu, Y.
Seymour, G.
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Successive immunization of mice with Fusobacterium nucleatum and Porphyromonas gingivalis has been shown to modulate the specific serum IgG responses to these organisms. The aim of this study was to investigate these antibody responses further by examining the IgG subclasses induced as well as the opsonizing properties of the specific antibodies. Serum samples from BALB/c mice immunized with F. nucleatum (gp1-F), P. gingivalis (gp2-P), P. gingivalis followed by F. nucleatum (gp3-PF) F. nucleatum followed by P. gingivalis (gp4-FP) or saline alone (gp5-S) were examined for specific IgG1 (Th2) and IgG2a (Th1) antibody levels using an ELISA and the opsonizing properties measured using a neutrophil chemiluminescence assay. While IgG1 and IgG2a subclasses were induced in all immunized groups, there was a tendency towards an IgG1 response in mice immunized with P. gingivalis alone, while immunization with F. nucleatum followed by P. gingivalis induced significantly higher anti-P. gingivalis IgG2a levels than IgG1. The maximum light output due to neutrophil phagocytosis of P. gingivalis occurred at 10 min using nonopsonized bacteria. Chemiluminescence was reduced using serum-opsonized P. gingivalis and, in particular, sera from P. gingivalis-immunized mice (gp2-P), with maximum responses occurring at 40 min. In contrast, phagocytosis of immune serum-opsonized F. nucleatum demonstrated peak light output at 10 min, while that of F. nucleatum opsonized with sera from saline injected mice (gp5-S) and control nonopsonized bacteria showed peak responses at 40 min. The lowest phagocytic response occurred using gp4-FP serum-opsonized F. nucleatum. In conclusion, the results of the present study have demonstrated a systemic Th1/Th2 response in mice immunized with P. gingivalis and/or F. nucleatum with a trend towards a Th2 response in P. gingivalis-immunized mice and a significantly increased anti-P. gingivalis IgG2a (Th1) response in mice immunized with F. nucleatum prior to P. gingivalis. Further, the inhibition of neutrophil phagocytosis of immune serum-opsonized P. gingivalis was modulated by the presence of anti-F. nucleatum antibodies, while anti-P. gingivalis antibodies induced an inhibitory effect on the phagocytic response to F. nucleatum.

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Oral Microbiology and Immunology

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