The body attempts to protect itself from HIV infection via the innate immune system. Defensins are proteins found in cells, which have been shown to have anti-HIV activity. However, the mechanism by which the defensins control HIV infection has not been known. Appearing online on February 17 in advance of publication in the March 1 print edition of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Theresa Chang and colleagues from Mount Sinai School of Medicine analyze how alpha-defensin-1, in particular, inhibits HIV infection in CD4+ T cells. CD4 + T cells are white blood cells that have molecules called CD4 on their exterior. They help orchestrate the bodys response to viruses and therefore play important roles in the immune system.
The researchers show that alpha-defensin-1 fights HIV in two different ways. Without serum (the watery portion of blood that remains when blood cells are removed) and under conditions where viral burden is low, alpha-defensin-1 directly inactivates HIV virus. When serum is present, alpha-defensin-1 acts on vulnerable cells to block HIV infection at the stage when the virus is taken up by the cell and begins replicating itself and integrating into the host. The authors also show that the way alpha-defensin-1 blocks HIV infection in cells is by inhibiting a CD4+ cell-signaling molecule called PKC.
The finding that alpha-defensin-1 acts on both the virus and the cell offers insights into the function of alpha-defensin-1 in innate immunity against HIV. In addition, this study provides a basis to develop defensin-like drugs for prevention of HIV and for therapeutic use in patients who are already infected.
Stacie Bloom | EurekAlert!
Researchers target protein that protects bacteria's DNA 'recipes'
21.08.2018 | University of Rochester
Protein interaction helps Yersinia cause disease
21.08.2018 | Schwedischer Forschungsrat - The Swedish Research Council
There are currently great hopes for solid-state batteries. They contain no liquid parts that could leak or catch fire. For this reason, they do not require cooling and are considered to be much safer, more reliable, and longer lasting than traditional lithium-ion batteries. Jülich scientists have now introduced a new concept that allows currents up to ten times greater during charging and discharging than previously described in the literature. The improvement was achieved by a “clever” choice of materials with a focus on consistently good compatibility. All components were made from phosphate compounds, which are well matched both chemically and mechanically.
The low current is considered one of the biggest hurdles in the development of solid-state batteries. It is the reason why the batteries take a relatively long...
New design tool automatically creates nanostructure 3D-print templates for user-given colors
Scientists present work at prestigious SIGGRAPH conference
Most of the objects we see are colored by pigments, but using pigments has disadvantages: such colors can fade, industrial pigments are often toxic, and...
Scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles present new research on a curious cosmic phenomenon known as "whistlers" -- very low frequency packets...
Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.
When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...
Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.
Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....
17.08.2018 | Event News
08.08.2018 | Event News
27.07.2018 | Event News
21.08.2018 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation
21.08.2018 | Life Sciences
21.08.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering