Date of Award


Document Type

Doctoral Thesis

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Jim O'Mahony

Second Advisor

Dr. Roy D. Sleator

Third Advisor

Dr. Aidan Coffey


Current whole-cell vaccines against Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis, the etiological agent of Johne’s disease, are unable to provide complete protection against infection. Moreover, such whole-cell formulations interfere with diagnostic tests for bovine tuberculosis (Mycobacterium bovis). The development of subunit vaccines, those which are preferentially based on one, or a select few, immunodominant protective antigens is considered as the realistic next step in overcoming these issues. The (MAP) K-10 genome is a single circular chromosome of 4,829,781 base pairs and encodes 4,350 predicted ORFs. In order to identify MAP specific proteins for subsequent incorporation within a mucosal based vaccine development, a subtractive sequence-based comparison was conducted using the entire MAP K-10 genome against a number of other completed Mycobacterial genomes. A bank of five candidate antigens including MAP specific, membrane associated and virulence related proteins has been identified. The expression of these antigenic candidates within a Lactobacillus salivarius delivery host will require further investigation.

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