Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Neurovirol. 1995 Dec;1(5-6):381-90.

Molecular mimicry between HIV-1 gp41 and an astrocyte isoform of alpha-actinin.

Author information

  • 1Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.


A 100-kDa astrocyte antigen previously shown to cross-react with a monoclonal antibody (MAb) generated against amino acids (aa) 598 to 609 of the transmembrane protein gp41 of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 [HIV-1] has now been molecularly characterized and found to be an alpha-actinin (alpha-actinin) related protein. Western blot analyses of human astrocytoma cells fractionated by differential centrifugation and detergent phase separation showed that the antigen was membrane associated. The astrocyte protein was purified to apparent homogeneity by immunoaffinity chromatography. Amino acid analysis of three peptide fragments obtained by cleavage of the purified 100-kDa protein revealed sequence identities of 77, 83 and 100% to a non-muscle isoform of human alpha-actinin. In addition, the aa 598-609 sequence of gp41 recognized by MAb 781.4, and the aa 581-597 sequence recognized by another cross-reactive MAb 781.3, were 73% and 53% similar to regions of alpha-actinin. This molecular mimicry between gp41 and alpha-actinin was supported by antibody cross-reactivity in Western immunoblot and ELISA analyses. Both anti-gp41 and anti-alpha-actinin MAbs bind to the surface of the human astrocytoma cells as detected by a cell surface binding assay and immunofluorescence. Antibodies made against this immunodominant region of gp41 in the serum and CSF of HIV-infected individuals have access to astrocytes within the CNS. The identification of the astrocyte antigen as an alpha-actinin related protein will allow further work to determine how this immunological cross-reactivity could perturb astrocyte function and contribute to HIV neuropathology.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk