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J Virol. 1993 Jan;67(1):577-83.

Immune response of rhesus macaques to recombinant simian immunodeficiency virus gp130 does not protect from challenge infection.

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Department of Veterinary Microbiology, University of California, Davis 95616.


Simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) infection of rhesus macaques is a model for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection in humans. Inactivated and modified live whole-virus vaccines have provided limited protective immunity against SIV in rhesus macaques. Because of safety concerns in the use of inactivated and live whole-virus vaccines, we evaluated the protective immunity of vaccinia virus recombinants expressing the surface glycoprotein (gp130) of SIVmac and subunit preparations of gp130 expressed in mammalian cells (CHO). Three groups of animals were immunized with recombinant SIV gp130. The first group received SIV gp130 purified from genetically engineered CHO cells (cSIVgp130), the second group was vaccinated with recombinant vaccinia virus expressing SIVmac gp130 (vSIVgp130), and the third group was first primed with vSIVgp130 and then given a booster immunization with cSIVgp130. Although anti-gp130 binding antibodies were elicited in all three groups, neutralizing antibodies were transient or undetectable. None of the immunized animals resisted intravenous challenge with a low dose of cell-free virus. However, the group primed with vSIVgp130 and then boosted with cSIVgp130 had the lowest antigen load (p27) compared with the other groups. The results of these studies suggest that immunization of humans with HIV type 1 surface glycoprotein may not provide protective immunity against virus infection.

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