Immune milk has been developed as a substitute for colostrum and contains a high concentration of IgG antibodies specific to the immunized pathogens. Meanwhile, bovine herpesvirus type-1 (BHV-1) naturally infects cattle worldwide, and its antibody is found in milk. Moreover, BHV-1 glycoprotein K, the major antigen, exhibits substantial homology with human herpes virus simplex 1 (HSV-1) glycoprotein K. On the basis of this evidence, we hypothesized BHV-1 antibody exists in immune milk and suppresses HSV-1 activity. This study investigated whether immune milk IgG recognizes HSV-1 and suppresses HSV-1 activity. IgG in immune milk was purified by affinity Protein A columns, and HSV-1-reactive IgG in immune milk IgG was detected and quantified by ELISA. The efficacy of the IgG against HSV-1 was analyzed using a reduction assay based on the cytopathic effect due to HSV-1 in the presence of macrophages. We detected a high concentration of HSV-1-reactive IgG in immune milk. Furthermore, IgG suppressed HSV-1 pathogenicity in the presence of macrophages. These results indicate immune milk has protective activity against HSV-1 by opsonic activity owing to its high concentration of HSV-1-reactive IgG, which is likely the BHV-1 antibody. HSV-1 is currently a refractory infection with a worldwide distribution. Primary infection occurs via the oral cavity, but there is no effective precaution at this time. However, the present results suggest that taking oral immune milk may be an effective measure to prevent primary HSV-1 infection in the oral cavity.
- Department of Molecular Diagnostics, Kitasato University School of Allied Health Sciences.