Microbicidal power of alpha radiation in sterilizing germinating Bacillus anthracis spores

Johanna Rivera, Alfred Morgenstern, Frank Bruchertseifer, John F. Kearney, Charles L. Turnbough, Ekaterina Dadachova, Arturo Casadevall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Radioimmunotherapy (RIT) takes advantage of the specificity and affinity of the antigen-antibody interaction to deliver microbicidal radioactive nuclides to a site of infection. In this study, we investigated the microbicidal properties of an alpha particle-emitting 213Bi-labeled monoclonal antibody (MAb), EA2-1 (213Bi-EA2-1), that binds to the immunodominant antigen on Bacillus anthracis spores. Our results showed that dormant spores were resistant to 213Bi-EA2-1. Significant spore killing was observed following treatment with EA2-1 labeled with 300 μCi 213Bi; however, this effect was not dependent on the MAb. In contrast, when spores were germinating, 213Bi-EA2-1 mediated MAb-specific killing in a dose-dependent manner. Dormant spores are very resistant to RIT, and RIT should focus on targeting vegetative cells and germinating spores.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1813-1815
Number of pages3
JournalAntimicrobial agents and chemotherapy
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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