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Nat Med. 2005 Jun;11(6):615-22. Epub 2005 May 8.

Delay of HIV-1 rebound after cessation of antiretroviral therapy through passive transfer of human neutralizing antibodies.

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Division of Infectious Diseases and Hospital Epidemiology, University Hospital Zurich, Ramistrasse 100, 8091 Zurich, Switzerland.


To determine the protective potential of the humoral immune response against HIV-1 in vivo we evaluated the potency of three neutralizing antibodies (2G12, 2F5 and 4E10) in suppressing viral rebound in six acutely and eight chronically HIV-1-infected individuals undergoing interruption of antiretroviral treatment (ART). Only two of eight chronically infected individuals showed evidence of a delay in viral rebound during the passive immunization. Rebound in antibody-treated acutely infected individuals upon cessation of ART was substantially later than in a control group of 12 individuals with acute infection. Escape mutant analysis showed that the activity of 2G12 was crucial for the in vivo effect of the neutralizing antibody cocktail. By providing further direct evidence of the potency, breadth and titers of neutralizing antibodies that are required for in vivo activity, these data underline both the potential and the limits of humoral immunity in controlling HIV-1 infection.

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