Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Antibody that neutralizes most HIV strains described by scientists

23.02.2005


A group of scientists from The Scripps Research Institute and several other institutions has solved the structure of a rare human antibody that broadly neutralizes human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).

Neutralizing antibodies are soluble proteins that are secreted by adaptive immune cells into the bloodstream, following exposure to a virus. In the bloodstream, antibodies bind to viral particles in circulation, prevent them from infecting human cells, and lead to the viral particles’ destruction­thus neutralizing them.

Because neutralizing antibodies attack the virus before it enters cells, they can prevent HIV infection if they are present prior to exposure to the virus. An HIV vaccine would seek to elicit these neutralizing antibodies -- just as existing vaccines against diseases such as measles, polio, hepatitis B, and hepatitis A elicit neutralizing antibodies against those viruses.



However, this is easier said than done. The body makes many antibodies against HIV, but they are almost always unable to neutralize the virus. Nonetheless, the immune systems of some patients with HIV have beaten the odds and have produced effective neutralizing antibodies. The structure of one of these, called 4E10, is described in the latest issue of the journal Immunity.

"This antibody is very broadly active," says Scripps Research Professor Dennis Burton, Ph.D., who led the research with Scripps Research Professor Ian Wilson, D.Phil. "It neutralized nearly 100 different viral strains of HIV from all over the world. [During tests in the laboratory], every one of them was neutralized."

4E10 was isolated from an HIV-positive individual about a decade ago by Burton and Wilson’s collaborator Hermann Katinger, a doctor at the Institute for Applied Microbiology of the University of Agriculture in Vienna, Austria, and one of the authors of the paper.

Significantly, the structure shows what an effective HIV-neutralizing antibody can look like. 4E10 targets an area on the HIV surface protein GP41 that the virus uses to fuse its membrane to the membrane of a human cell it is infecting. The target area is unusually close to the virus’s membrane surface, and the antibody has an unusual adaptation that might help it stick to the virus close to the membrane­a "finger" of amino acids with a propensity to dip down into the membrane and bring the antibody in contact with the target area.

Moreover, since the structure shows what the "epitope" looks like -- the area on the HIV surface to which 4E10 binds -- this work gives scientists insight into how to reverse-engineer a component of an HIV vaccine. The structure of this antibody could be used as a template to design an epitope mimic that would stimulate the human immune system to make 4E10 or similar broadly neutralizing antibodies against HIV.

"Once one knows what the epitope is, one can design mimics of it much more easily," says Wilson, who is an investigator in The Skaggs Institute for Chemical Biology at The Scripps Research Institute.

Keith McKeown | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.scripps.edu
http://www.immunity.com

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Link Discovered between Immune System, Brain Structure and Memory
26.04.2017 | Universität Basel

nachricht Researchers develop eco-friendly, 4-in-1 catalyst
25.04.2017 | Brown University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Scientist invents way to trigger artificial photosynthesis to clean air

26.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ammonium nitrogen input increases the synthesis of anticarcinogenic compounds in broccoli

26.04.2017 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

SwRI-led team discovers lull in Mars' giant impact history

26.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>