Trivalent antibodies against HIV
Three-in-one antibodies can be a breakthrough in HIV prevention and treatment
The new artificial antibody destroyed 99% of HIV-1 strains in laboratory conditions and showed 100% preventive efficacy in studies on monkeys.
The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) has published the results of a test of a new antibody developed jointly with the French company Sanofi. It can become the basis for HIV prevention and treatment. In preclinical studies, three-in-one antibodies showed exceptional activity against various HIV strains.
One in the field is not a warrior
When a virus enters the body, antibodies produced by the immune system usually target only one "target" on the foreign agent. But the particles of the human immunodeficiency virus are more complicated than many other viruses, so the immune system is not able to stop the penetration of HIV into the body and its further reproduction.
Therefore, scientists have created a so-called broadly neutralizing antibody that attacks not one, but three vulnerabilities on the "body" of the virus at once.
In the Sanofi drawing, these areas are highlighted in blue, purple and green – VM.
"This approach makes it possible to improve protection against HIV and provides the basis for potentially new treatments for not only infectious, but also oncological, as well as immune diseases," said Gary Nabel, chief scientist and senior vice president of Sanofi.
In the laboratory, triple antibodies destroyed 99% of more than 200 different strains of HIV-1, according to a Sanofi press release.
"Combination therapy has already demonstrated its value in the treatment of HIV and cancer. Triple antibodies represent a potentially new class of therapeutic agents," Dr. Nabel concluded.
One hundred percent activity
In addition, the researchers studied the preventive activity of the antibody among monkeys using the SHIV virus (monkey immunodeficiency virus – a retrovirus similar to HIV). 24 animals were divided into three equal groups: one of the groups received injections of "three-in-one" antibodies, the other two were vaccinated with conventional "single" antibodies. As a result of the experiment, all 8 monkeys who received the triple antibody remained healthy. In the other two groups, 11 animals out of 16 received the SHIV virus.
Now researchers are preparing for clinical trials involving humans. It is expected that they will begin in 2018 in one of the NIH structures.
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