Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 101, Issue 1, pp 341–349 | Cite as

Secretion of an immunoreactive single-chain variable fragment antibody against mouse interleukin 6 by Lactococcus lactis

  • Suguru Shigemori
  • Masaki Ihara
  • Takashi Sato
  • Yoshinari Yamamoto
  • Shireen Nigar
  • Tasuku Ogita
  • Takeshi ShimosatoEmail author
Applied microbial and cell physiology


Interleukin 6 (IL-6) is an important pathogenic factor in development of various inflammatory and autoimmune diseases and cancer. Blocking antibodies against molecules associated with IL-6/IL-6 receptor signaling are an attractive candidate for the prevention or therapy of these diseases. In this study, we developed a genetically modified strain of Lactococcus lactis secreting a single-chain variable fragment antibody against mouse IL-6 (IL6scFv). An IL6scFv-secretion vector was constructed by cloning an IL6scFv gene fragment into a lactococcal secretion plasmid and was electroporated into L. lactis NZ9000 (NZ-IL6scFv). Secretion of recombinant IL6scFv (rIL6scFv) by nisin-induced NZ-IL6scFv was confirmed by western blotting and was optimized by tuning culture conditions. We found that rIL6scFv could bind to commercial recombinant mouse IL-6. This result clearly demonstrated the immunoreactivity of rIL6scFv. This is the first study to engineer a genetically modified strain of lactic acid bacteria (gmLAB) that produces a functional anti-cytokine scFv. Numerous previous studies suggested that mucosal delivery of biomedical proteins using gmLAB is an effective and low-cost way to treat various disorders. Therefore, NZ-IL6scFv may be an attractive tool for the research and development of new IL-6 targeting agents for various inflammatory and autoimmune diseases as well as for cancer.


gmLAB Immunoreactivity Interleukin 6 Lactococcus lactis scFv antibody 



We are grateful to Yasuhiro Yasaki, Kohichi Sudo, and Fu Namai (Faculty of Agriculture, Shinshu University) for their excellent support in purification of recombinant proteins.

Compliance with ethical standards


This study was supported by a Grant-in-Aid for the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Fellows (No. 14J06317) to SS and by a grant from Sumitomo Electric Industries Group CSR Foundation (No. 2012#7) to TSh.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Suguru Shigemori
    • 1
    • 2
  • Masaki Ihara
    • 1
    • 3
  • Takashi Sato
    • 4
  • Yoshinari Yamamoto
    • 1
    • 2
  • Shireen Nigar
    • 1
    • 5
  • Tasuku Ogita
    • 3
  • Takeshi Shimosato
    • 1
    • 3
    • 6
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Bioscience and Food Production Science, Interdisciplinary Graduate School of Science and TechnologyShinshu UniversityKamiinaJapan
  2. 2.Research Fellow of the Japan Society for the Promotion of ScienceJapan Society for the Promotion of ScienceTokyoJapan
  3. 3.Department of Interdisciplinary Genome Sciences and Cell Metabolism, Institute for Biomedical SciencesShinshu UniversityKamiinaJapan
  4. 4.Department of Internal Medicine and Clinical Immunology, Graduate School of MedicineYokohama City UniversityYokohamaJapan
  5. 5.Department of Nutrition and Food TechnologyJessore University of Science and TechnologyJessoreBangladesh
  6. 6.Supramolecular Complexes Unit, Research Center for Fungal and Microbial DynamismShinshu UniversityKamiinaJapan

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