Outer membrane vesicle vaccines from biosafe surrogates prevent acute lethal glanders in mice

Michael H. Norris, Mohammad S.R. Khan, Sunisa Chirakul, Herbert P. Schweizer, Apichai Tuanyok

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Burkholderia mallei is a host-adapted Gram-negative mammalian pathogen that causes the severe disease glanders. Glanders can manifest as a rapid acute progression or a chronic debilitating syndrome primarily affecting solipeds and humans in close association with infected animals. In USA, B. mallei is classified as one of the most important bacterial biothreat agents. Presently, there is no licensed glanders vaccine available for humans or animals. In this work, outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) were isolated from three attenuated biosafe bacterial strains, Burkholderia pseudomallei Bp82, B. thailandensis E555, and B. thailandensis TxDOH and used to vaccinate mice. B. thailandensis OMVs induced significantly higher antibody responses that were investigated. B. mallei specific serum antibody responses were of higher magnitude in mice vaccinated with B. thailandensis OMVs compared to levels in mice vaccinated with B. pseudomallei OMVs. OMVs derived from biosafe strains protected mice from acute lethal glanders with vesicles from the two B. thailandensis strains affording significant protection (>90%) up to 35 days post-infection with some up to 60 days. Organ loads from 35-day survivors indicated bacteria colonization of the lungs, liver, and spleen while those from 60 days had high CFUs in the spleens. The highest antibody producing vaccine (B. thailandensis E555 OMVs) also protected C57BL/6 mice from acute inhalational glanders with evidence of full protection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number5
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Biosafe vaccines
  • Glanders
  • Outer membrane vesicles

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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