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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2003 Sep 30;100(20):11672-7. Epub 2003 Sep 12.

Inhibition of HIV infectivity by a natural human isolate of Lactobacillus jensenii engineered to express functional two-domain CD4.

Author information

  • 1Osel, Inc., 1800 Wyatt Drive, Suite 14, Santa Clara, CA 95054, USA.

Abstract

The predominant mode of HIV transmission worldwide is via heterosexual contact, with the cervico-vaginal mucosa being the main portal of entry in women. The cervico-vaginal mucosa is naturally colonized with commensal bacteria, primarily lactobacilli. To address the urgent need for female-controlled approaches to block the heterosexual transmission of HIV, we have engineered natural human vaginal isolates of Lactobacillus jensenii to secrete two-domain CD4 (2D CD4) proteins. The secreted 2D CD4 recognized a conformation-dependent anti-CD4 antibody and bound HIV type 1 (HIV-1) gp120, suggesting that the expressed proteins adopted a native conformation. Single-cycle infection assays using HIV-1HxB2 carrying a luciferase reporter gene demonstrated that Lactobacillus-derived 2D CD4 inhibited HIV-1 entry into target cells in a dose-dependent manner. Importantly, coincubation of the engineered bacteria with recombinant HIV-1HxB2 reporter virus led to a significant decrease in virus infectivity of HeLa cells expressing CD4-CXCR4-CCR5. Engineered lactobacilli also caused a modest, but statistically significant, decrease in infectivity of a primary isolate, HIV-1JR-FL. This represents an important first step toward the development of engineered commensal bacteria within the vaginal microflora to inhibit heterosexual transmission of HIV.

PMID:
12972635
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC208816
Free PMC Article

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