Buruli ulcer disease: prospects for a vaccine

  • Kris Huygen
  • Ohene Adjei
  • Dissou Affolabi
  • Gisela Bretzel
  • Caroline Demangel
  • Bernhard Fleischer
  • Roch Christian Johnson
  • Jorge Pedrosa
  • Delphin M. Phanzu
  • Richard O. Phillips
  • Gerd Pluschke
  • Vera Siegmund
  • Mahavir Singh
  • Tjip S. van der Werf
  • Mark Wansbrough-Jones
  • Françoise Portaels
Review

DOI: 10.1007/s00430-009-0109-6

Cite this article as:
Huygen, K., Adjei, O., Affolabi, D. et al. Med Microbiol Immunol (2009) 198: 69. doi:10.1007/s00430-009-0109-6

Abstract

Buruli ulcer disease (BUD), caused by Mycobacterium ulcerans, is a neglected bacterial infection of the poor in remote rural areas, mostly affecting children. BUD is a mutilating disease leading to severe disability; it is the third most common mycobacterial infection in immunocompetent people after tuberculosis and leprosy. It is most endemic in West Africa, but cases have been reported from more than 30 countries. Treatment with antibiotics is possible, long-lasting and requires injections; there are cases of treatment failures, and the disease is prone to resistance. A vaccine against M. ulcerans would protect persons at risk in highly endemic areas, and could be used as a therapeutic vaccine to shorten the duration of treatment and prevent relapses. There is considerable evidence supporting the notion that generation of a vaccine is feasible. This article reviews the present state of the art with special emphasis on the immunology of the infection and the prospects for development of a vaccine.

Keywords

Buruli ulcer Mycobacterium ulcerans Mycolactone toxin Vaccine Neglected diseases Review 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kris Huygen
    • 1
  • Ohene Adjei
    • 2
  • Dissou Affolabi
    • 3
  • Gisela Bretzel
    • 4
  • Caroline Demangel
    • 5
  • Bernhard Fleischer
    • 6
  • Roch Christian Johnson
    • 7
  • Jorge Pedrosa
    • 8
  • Delphin M. Phanzu
    • 9
  • Richard O. Phillips
    • 10
  • Gerd Pluschke
    • 11
  • Vera Siegmund
    • 12
  • Mahavir Singh
    • 13
  • Tjip S. van der Werf
    • 14
  • Mark Wansbrough-Jones
    • 15
  • Françoise Portaels
    • 16
  1. 1.Scientific Institute of Public HealthBrusselsBelgium
  2. 2.Kumasi Centre for Collaborative ResearchKumasiGhana
  3. 3.Laboratoire de Référence des MycobactériesCotonouBenin
  4. 4.Department of Infectious Diseases and Tropical MedicineLudwig-Maximilians-UniversityMunichGermany
  5. 5.Institut PasteurParisFrance
  6. 6.Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical MedicineHamburgGermany
  7. 7.Programme National de Lutte contre l’Ulcère de BuruliCotonouBenin
  8. 8.Life and Health Sciences Research Institute (ICVS), School of Health SciencesUniversity de MinhoBragaPortugal
  9. 9.Institut Medical EvangeliqueKimpeseDR Congo
  10. 10.Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and TechnologyKumasiGhana
  11. 11.Swiss Tropical InstituteBaselSwitzerland
  12. 12.European Research and Project Office GmbHSaarbrückenGermany
  13. 13.LIONEX Diagnostics and Therapeutics GmbHBrunswickGermany
  14. 14.University of Groningen Medical CentreGroningenThe Netherlands
  15. 15.St George’s UniversityLondonUK
  16. 16.Prince Leopold Institute of Tropical MedicineAntwerpBelgium

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