SHIV Infection Protects Against Heterologous Pathogenic SHIV Challenge in Macaques: A Gold-Standard for HIV-1 Vaccine Development?

Author(s): Robert Sealy, Xiaoyan Zhan, Timothy D. Lockey, Louis Martin, James Blanchard, Vicki Traina-Dorge, Julia L. Hurwitz.

Journal Name: Current HIV Research

Volume 7 , Issue 5 , 2009

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Abstract:

A current debate in the HIV-1 vaccine field concerns the ability of an immunodeficiency virus to elicit a protective response. One argument is that HIV-1 superinfections are frequent in healthy individuals, because virus evades conventional immune surveillance, a serious obstacle to vaccine design. The opposing argument is that protection from superinfection is significant, reflecting a robust immune response that might be harnessed by vaccination to prevent disease. In an experiment designed to address the debate, two macaques received an I.V. inoculation with SHIV KU-1-d (a derivative of SHIV KU-1) and were rested for > 10 months. Infection elicited diverse neutralizing antibody activities in both animals. Animals were then exposed to SHIV 89.6P (I.V.), a virus carrying a heterologous envelope protein relative to the vaccine strain. Infection was monitored by viral load and CD4+ T-cell measurements. All control animals were infected and most succumbed to disease. In contrast, protection from superinfection was statistically significant in test monkeys; one animal showed no evidence of superinfection at any time point and the second showed evidence of virus at only one time point over a 6-month observation period. Neither animal showed signs of disease. Perhaps this protective state may serve as a ‘gold-standard’ for HIV-1 vaccine development, as a similar degree of protection against immunodeficiency virus infections in humans would be much desired.

Keywords: Rhesus macaques, Protective immunity, SHIV, Neutralization, Vaccine

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Article Details

VOLUME: 7
ISSUE: 5
Year: 2009
Page: [497 - 503]
Pages: 7
DOI: 10.2174/157016209789346255

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