Researchers Find The First Potential HIV Vaccine Candidate

By Peter R - 20 Jun '15 19:17PM

Researchers have found a molecule candidate that could be a potential HIV vaccine. Testing in mice has shown it can help prevent an infection.

Researchers at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI), International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI) and The Rockefeller University published in two studies how genetically engineered mice injected with the protein eOD-GT8 60mer resulted in production of antibody precursors.

"The vaccine appears to work well in our mouse model to 'prime' the antibody response," said David Nemazee a TSRI professor.

The usual approach to immunize against a virus is to use a dead or inactivated virus to stimulate the body's immune response by activating B cells. However, HIV can evade the immune system by mutation when it infects the host. This has prevented researchers from succeeding to produce a vaccine the usual way.

Researchers thus had to find a vaccine candidate consisting several but related proteins that could result in a require antibodies to neutralize the virus.

Using a technique B cell sorting, researchers were able to determine the presence of precursors of antibody resistance, indicating that eOD-GT8 60mer is a good candidate to begin with for producing a vaccine. Researchers are said to be working on other molecules that can work with eOD-GT8 60mer.

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