Scientists have discovered an antibody that neutralizes 96% of HIV strains

MOSCOW, 16 Oct RIA Novosti. American molecular biologists have discovered an antibody that can suppress almost 96% of HIV strains and 16 of the 20 most “invulnerable” version, which gives hope for a universal cure for human immunodeficiency virus, according to a paper published in the journal Immunity.

When our body gets a germ or virus, specific immune cells B-lymphocytes capture of particles of the pathogen. Absorbing them, they pick up a particular protein molecule-antibody which will adhere to the surface of the bacteria or virus and mark them.

Most of these antibodies are able to recognize only one type of bacteria or virus, making them extremely ineffective in the fight against HIV and other retroviruses, the structure of the shell which is constantly changing. Extremely rare B-cells are able to generate a universal antibody, clinging to vital areas on the surface of almost all varieties of viruses and germs.

In recent years, scientists were able to identify several of these antibodies from the blood of patients infected with HIV. Some of them suppress very large number of strains of the HIV virus, however, a variety of its subtypes does not allow to use such antibodies to get rid of the infection, as part of the virus still survives.

The international scientific team led by Mark Connors (Mark Connors) from the National Institute of Allergy and infectious diseases of the United States in Bethesda announced the discovery of the new antibodies to the N6, which “felt” weak point in the protein shell of the human immunodeficiency virus, and learned to neutralize about 96% of the known variations of this virus.

This is an unusual antibody was found in a patient’s blood, known under the code Z258 whose immune system is abnormally well with infection. According to scientists, this man has lived with HIV for more than 21 years and his immune system was in good condition, despite the fact that he had not taken antiretroviral drugs for a very long time.

The nature of it is similar to other known antibody VRC01, the vast majority approximately 90% of HIV strains, but N6 “clings” for the virus at another point of the protein, which was found by the authors of the article, almost does not change with the mutations. Furthermore, N6 has learned to avoid contact with a sugar molecule on the envelope of HIV, whose ever-changing structure protects the virus from immune system attacks.

The unusual structure of this antibody, radically different from what other antibodies with broad spectrum of action, holds out the hope that his work will significantly improve by introducing new mutations. Interestingly, many features of the device N6 to ensure its universality, previously opened by scientists and used to improve the work of other antibodies.

As VRC01 is now in clinical trial, Connors and his colleagues propose to add to these trials and N6, as this antibody is objectively better than its predecessor, as outdoor laboratories of the National Institute of Allergy and infectious diseases. Its use can extend the life of HIV and to protect other people from Contracting the virus.

The N6 antibody neutralizing the “unbreakable” variety of HIV