Staphylococcus aureus is an extremely adaptable pathogen and colonizer of the human body, which displays increasingly high rates of antibiotic resistance. Also, this bacterium is notorious for colonizing medical implants like artificial joints and heart valves. Such implant infections are difficult to cure, and in many cases the infected implants need to be replaced. These challenges call for the development of alternative anti-staphylococcal therapies and tools for early diagnosis of S. aureus infections. The research described in this thesis was aimed at characterizing human antibody responses to proteins exposed on the surface of S. aureus cells, and to explore the possible use of human antibodies against such proteins to detect staphylococcal infections at early stages. The results highlight particular cell surface proteins of S. aureus as potential targets for novel immunotherapies to protect humans against infection. Further, two human monoclonal antibodies (humAbs) against S. aureus surface proteins are described that may allow the non-invasive detection of infecting S. aureus by fluorescent imaging and by positron emission tomography (i.e. PET-scanning). For one of these humAbs, the potential application in infection imaging was explored in detail. Altogether, the findings described in this thesis represent important steps towards the development of novel immunotherapies against S. aureus infections and the targeted imaging of infecting staphylococci.
|Translated title of the contribution||Mogelijke aangrijpingspunten voor immuuntherapie en infectiebeeldvorming op het celoppervlak van de bacterie Staphylococcus aureus|
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Place of Publication||[Groningen]|
|Publication status||Published - 2017|