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Vojnosanit Pregl. 2014 Apr;71(4):352-61.

Natural autoantibodies in healthy neonatals recognizing a peptide derived from the second conserved region of HIV-1 gp120.



High sera reactivity with a peptide derived from human immunodeficiency virus HIV-1 envelope protein gpl20, NTM1, correlate with non-progressive HIV-1 infection and also may have protective role in breast and prostate cancer. We also detected a low NTM1 reactive antibodies titer in healthy HIV negative sera and showed that antibody levels can be significantly increased with vigorous physical activity. However, the immune system seems to be unresponsive or tolerant to this peptide, implicating that the NTM1 sequence encompasses or overlaps a certain innate immune epitope. The aim of this study was to present evidences that NTM1 - binding antibodies - are components of innate immune humoral response, by confirming their presence in sera of newborn babies. For this purpose we collected a set of 225 innate antigen sequences reported in the literature and screened it for candidate antigens with the highest sequence and spectral similarity to NTM1 derived from HIV-1 gp120.


Sera from 18 newborns were tested using ELISA, with peptide NTM1. Sequences from innate antigen database were aligned by an EMBOSS Water bioinformatics tool.


We identified NTM1 reactive antibodies in sera of HIV negative newborn babies. Further, in order to identify which of already known innate antigens are the most similar to NTM1 peptide we screened innate immune antigen sequence database collected from the literature. This screening revealed that the most similar sequence are ribonucleoproteins RO60, in addition to previously identified N-terminus of vasoactive intestinal peptide.


The results of this study confirm the hypothesis that NTM1 recognizing antibodies are a part of humoral innate immune response. Further, computational similarity screening revealed a vasoactive intestinal peptide and RO60 as the most similar sequences and the strongest candidate antigens. In the light of the presented results, it is appealing that testing blood reactivity at birth, with specific innate antigens, particularly a vasoactive intestinal peptide, can reveal the potential to develop or boost protective immune response in breast and prostate cancer and HIV infection later in life.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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