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Naturally Occurring Single Amino Acid Substitution in the L1 Major Capsid Protein of Human Papillomavirus Type 16: Alteration of Susceptibility to Antibody-Mediated Neutralization.

Ning T, et al. J Infect Dis. 2017.


Background: Each vaccine for human papillomavirus type 16 (HPV16) has been developed on the basis of a single variant, and whether these vaccines can prevent infection due to naturally occurring variants was not clear.

Methods: To examine this question, constructs of 39 naturally occurring single amino acid substitutions in L1 were generated for pseudovirion production, based on the analysis of 1204 HPV16 L1 protein sequences from the National Center for Biotechnology Information and Papilloma Virus Episteme.

Results: Thirty-one of 39 HPV16 L1 mutants produced infectious pseudovirions that exhibited similar particle-to-infectivity ratios, compared with reference pseudovirions. Twenty-one of 31 pseudovirion-producing mutants showed different susceptibilities to monoclonal antibodies, with 6 resulting in complete loss of reactivity to some of the tested monoclonal antibodies. The vaccinated sera neutralized all 31 variants. Mean neutralization titers of most variants changed by approximately 4-fold, compared with the reference pseudovirions, with the C428W and K430Q mutations displaying 9-fold and 11-fold lower susceptibilities, respectively, to neutralization by the sera than the reference pseudovirions.

Conclusions: These results suggest that the current HPV vaccines may not offer equal protection against all of the naturally occurring HPV16 variants discovered so far.

© The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press for the Infectious Diseases Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, e-mail:


28968823 [Indexed for MEDLINE]

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