About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Scientists Discover Promising Strategy to Help Vaccines Outsmart HIV

by Sheela Philomena on May 27, 2013 at 12:53 PM
Font : A-A+

 Scientists Discover Promising Strategy to Help Vaccines Outsmart HIV

An ingenious method to ensure the body effectively reacts when infected with the highly evasive HIV virus that causes AIDS has been identified by scientists.

The same team of researchers has been utilizing this unique approach to develop its own HIV vaccine candidate, which has so far shown promising results in animal studies.

Advertisement

"A major challenge in developing an effective HIV vaccine is figuring out how to target this evasive virus," said Dr. Louis Picker, M.D., associate director of the OHSU Vaccine and Gene Therapy Institute, where the work was conducted.

CD8 plus "cytotoxic" T cells are an important component of the immune system and are particularly important for pathogens, like HIV, that easily evade antibodies. They serve as sentries within the body that detect and destroy virus-infected cells, accomplishing this function by recognizing short viral peptides on the surface of infected cells.
Advertisement

T-cells are designed to be quite frugal in the number of different viral peptides they recognize, typically responding to just a handful of such peptides. This is a problem for control of HIV, which is able to able change its peptides and thus escape T cells responses that do not target the relatively few functionally critical peptides that can't change without debilitating the virus. In the vast majority of HIV infections, the few viral peptides recognized by T cells are not the vulnerable ones, and the virus escapes.

Therefore, the strategy that Dr. Picker and his colleagues adopted was to try to develop a vaccine to increase the number of viral peptides that T cells would recognize, reasoning that increasing this "recognition breadth" would allow T cells to more effectively respond to HIV.

The researchers found that cytomegalovirus or CMV, a common virus already carried by a large percentage of the population, may hold the key. Their studies in the non-human primate model of HIV, called SIV, found that a modified version of CMV engineered to express SIV proteins generates SIV-specific T cells that recognize three-fold as many SIV peptides as T cell generated by conventional vaccines and SIV itself.

Moreover, these responses were entirely different from conventional responses, such that even viruses that had previously escaped natural responses would still be vulnerable. In effect, the hunters of the body were provided with a much better targeting system to help them find and destroy an elusive enemy.

Picker and his colleagues believe an HIV vaccine equipped with a modified CMV vector might be able to both prevent infection (prophylactic vaccine) and effectively battle the virus even if applied post-infection in individuals with infections suppressed by anti-retroviral therapy. Moving forward, the research team hopes to utilize this new information to create customized CMV vectors with a broad ability to identify several components of HIV and then incorporate this component into an effective vaccine.

"We hope we can begin clinical trials in human patients within a few years," explained Dr. Picker.

This latest research finding will be published in the journal Science.

Source: ANI
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
First-Ever Successful Pig-To-Human Kidney Transplantation
World Osteoporosis Day 2021 -
Spirituality and Mental Health
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Oral Health And AIDS AIDS/HIV AIDS/HIV - Epidemiology AIDS/HIV - Clinical Features AIDS/HIV - Health Education AIDS/HIV - Prevention And Transmission AIDS / HIV - Treatment AIDS/HIV- Lab Tests and Faqs Prostitution: Fresh Stakes in the Oldest Trade HIV Symptom 

Recommended Reading
AIDS/HIV - Prevention And Transmission
Encyclopedia section of medindia explains in brief about the prevention for AIDS/HIV...
Quiz on HIV / AIDS
Statistics tell us that the world HIV+ population has risen drastically from 8 million in 1990 to a ...
Cabinet Approves Rs 2,550 Crore for Implementation of AIDS Program
Around Rs 2,550 crore will be spent implementation of National AIDS Control Support Project (NACSP) ...
AIDS / HIV - Treatment
Encyclopedia section of medindia explains in brief about the treatment for AIDS/HIV...
AIDS/HIV
"AIDS is an epidemic disease, a potentially preventable, deadly infection for which there is no cure...
AIDS/HIV - Clinical Features
Encyclopedia section of medindia gives general info about HIV Clinical Features...
AIDS/HIV - Epidemiology
AIDS or HIV is an epidemic disease, a potentially deadly infection that can be prevented with preca...
AIDS/HIV - Health Education
Encyclopedia section of medindia gives general info about AIDS information and health education....
Oral Health And AIDS
AIDS has taken on massive proportions in modern times. It is estimated that over 15 million people a...
Prostitution: Fresh Stakes in the Oldest Trade
Prostitution has broadened its base to include street prostitution, massage brothels, gigolo outcall...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use