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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1997 Oct 29;239(3):884-8.

Construction and enhanced cytotoxicity of a [cyanovirin-N]-[Pseudomonas exotoxin] conjugate against human immunodeficiency virus-infected cells.

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Laboratory of Drug Discovery Research and Development, National Cancer Institute, Frederick, Maryland 21702-1201, USA.


Cyanovirin-N (CV-N) is a novel 11-kDa anti-HIV(human immunodeficiency virus) protein that binds with high affinity to the viral envelope glycoprotein gp120. In contrast to soluble CD4 and most known neutralizing antibodies that bind gp120, CV-N exerts potent anti-viral activity against primary clinical HIV isolates as well as laboratory-adapted strains of HIV. Here we describe the recombinant production, purification, and characterization of a chimeric toxin molecule, FLAG-CV-N-PE38, that contains CV-N as a gp120-targeting moiety linked to the translocation and cytotoxic domains of Pseudomonas exotoxin A. FLAG-CV-N-PE38 showed enhanced cytotoxicity to HIV-infected, gp120-expressing H9 cells compared to uninfected H9 cells. Competition experiments with free CV-N provided further support that the enhanced FLAG-CV-N-PE38-induced cytotoxicity was due to interactions of the CV-N moiety with cell surface gp120. This study establishes the feasibility of use of CV-N as a gp120-targeting sequence for construction and experimental therapeutic investigations of unique new chimeric toxins designed to selectively destroy HIV-infected host cells.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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