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J Immunol. 2006 May 1;176(9):5627-36.

Lactobacilli-expressed single-chain variable fragment (scFv) specific for intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1) blocks cell-associated HIV-1 transmission across a cervical epithelial monolayer.

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  • 1Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, 615 North Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA.

Abstract

The vaginal and cervical epithelia provide an initial barrier to sexually acquired HIV-1 infection in women. To study the interactions between HIV-1-infected cells or cell-free HIV-1 and the reproductive epithelium, the transmission of HIV-1 by infected cells or cell-free virus across human cervical epithelial cells was examined using a Transwell culture system. Cell-associated HIV-1 was transmitted more efficiently than cell-free virus, and monocyte-associated virus was transmitted most efficiently. Abs to ICAM-1 added to the apical side of the epithelium blocked cell-mediated transepithelial HIV-1 transmission in vitro. When used in a previously described model of vaginal HIV-1 transmission in human PBL-SCID mice, anti-murine ICAM-1 Abs (0.4 microg/10 microl) also blocked vaginal transmission of cell-associated HIV-1 in vivo. To evaluate a candidate delivery system for the use of this Ab as an anti-HIV-1 microbicide, anti-ICAM single-chain variable fragment Abs secreted by transformed lactobacilli were evaluated for their protective efficacy in the Transwell model. Like the intact Ab and Fab derived from it, the single-chain variable fragment at a concentration of 6.7 microg/100 microl was able to reduce HIV-1 transmission by 70 +/- 5%. These data support the potential efficacy of an anti-ICAM Ab delivered by lactobacilli for use as an anti-HIV-1 microbicide.

PMID:
16622032
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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