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Pneumococci produce a conserved sugar group antigen (CWPS, C-Ps, teichoic acid). Recent research has shown at least two different variants, based on the quantity of phosphorylcholine (CWPS1 and CWPS2) (article 2). CWPS Multi consists of 50% CWPS1 and 50% CWPS2.
Streptococcus pneumoniae expresses a number of different sugars on the cell surface. Most sugars are in the cell capsule, which defines the 92 different pneumococcal serotypes currently known. In addition to the type-specific capsule sugars, all pneumococci also express a group antigen, referred to as the cell wall polysaccharide (CWPS). CWPS is found in two different forms, depending on the quantity of phosphorylcholine per sugar unit. The capsule sugars are found in existing vaccines, partly in conjugate vaccine for children, but also in pure sugar vaccines for adults.
Pneumococcal CWPS sugar (1 and 2) is produced by purifying the sugar from well-defined non-capsule-bearing pneumococcal reference strains. The protein and DNA/RNA impurity is minimal, less than 3% of the total quantity.
Pneumococcal CWPS Multi is used as adsorption material in immunological investigations such as ELISA antibody assays, to evaluate whether any vaccination/revaccination is desirable. When CWPS Multi is used, adsorption with the 22F capsule, as recommended by WHO for ELISA (article 1), is not required.
1) www.vaccine.uab.edu/ELISA Protocol.pdf 2) Skovsted IC, Kerrn MB, Sonne-Hansen J, Sauer LE, Nielsen AK, Konradsen HB, Petersen BO, Nyberg NT, Duus JO. Purification and structure characterization of the active component in the pneumococcal 22F polysaccharide capsule used for adsorption in pneumococcal enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. Vaccine. 2007 Aug 29;25(35):6490-500.
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