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J Virol. 2011 Aug;85(15):7563-71. doi: 10.1128/JVI.00630-11. Epub 2011 May 25.

A tyrosine-sulfated CCR5-mimetic peptide promotes conformational transitions in the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein.

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Department of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School, Children's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.


The HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein is a trimeric complex of heterodimers composed of a surface glycoprotein, gp120, and a transmembrane component, gp41. The association of this complex with CD4 stabilizes the coreceptor-binding site of gp120 and promotes the exposure of the gp41 helical region 1 (HR1). Here, we show that a 15-amino-acid peptide mimetic of the HIV-1 coreceptor CCR5 fused to a dimeric antibody Fc domain (CCR5mim-Ig) bound two gp120 molecules per envelope glycoprotein complex and by itself promoted HR1 exposure. CCR5mim-Ig also stabilized the association of a CD4-mimetic peptide with the envelope glycoprotein. A fusion of the CD4- and CCR5-mimetic peptides, DM1, bound gp120 and neutralized R5, R5X4, and X4 HIV-1 isolates comparably to CD4, and they did so markedly more efficiently than either peptide alone. Our data indicate that the potency of DM1-Ig derives from its avidity for the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein trimer and from the bidirectional induction of its receptor-mimetic components. DM1 has significant advantages over other inhibitors that target both coreceptor and CD4-binding sites, and it may serve as a lead for a new class of HIV-1 inhibitor peptides.

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