New anti-HIV gene therapy makes T-cells resistant to HIV infection

Jan 26, 2011

An innovative genetic strategy for rendering T-cells resistant to HIV infection without affecting their normal growth and activity is described in a paper published in Human Gene Therapy, a peer-reviewed journal published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

A team of researchers from Japan, Korea, and the U.S. developed an anti-HIV method in which a bacterial gene called mazF is transferred into CD4+ T-cells. The MazF protein is an enzyme (an mRNA interferase) that destroys gene transcripts, preventing . The design of this mazF gene therapy vector ensures that synthesis of the MazF protein is triggered by . When HIV infects treated T lymphocytes, MazF is induced, blocking HIV replication and, essentially, making the T-cells resistant.

This elegant gene therapy tool was developed by Hideto Chono and colleagues from Takara Bio Inc. (Otsu, Shiga, Japan), Seoul National University and ViroMed Co. (Seoul, Korea), National Institute of Biomedical Innovation (Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan), and Robert Wood Johnson Medical School (Piscataway, NJ). The authors describe the theory and science behind this strategy in the paper entitled, "Acquisition of HIV-1 Resistance in T Lymphocytes Using an ACA-Specific E. coli mRNA Interferase."

"The potential of using vectors to express genes within a cell to block viral infection was first considered by David Baltimore in a strategy called 'intracellular immunization.' This study illustrates a unique way in which intracellular immunization can be achieved," says James M. Wilson, MD, PhD, Editor-in-Chief, and Director of the Gene Therapy Program, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia.

Explore further: A fresh setback for efforts to cure HIV infection

More information: The paper is available free online at www.liebertpub.com/hum

Provided by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

5 /5 (6 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Engineered human fusion protein inhibits HIV-1 replication

Sep 08, 2009

In 2004, Jeremy Luban and colleagues from the University of Geneva, Switzerland, reported that New World owl monkeys (Aotus genus) make a fusion protein - AoT5Cyp - that potently blocks HIV-1 infection. The human genome encodes ...

Researchers find a peptide that encourages HIV infection

May 10, 2007

UCLA AIDS Institute researchers have discovered that when a crucial portion of a peptide structure in monkeys that defends against viruses, bacteria and other foreign invaders is reversed, the peptide actually encourages ...

Recommended for you

A fresh setback for efforts to cure HIV infection

6 hours ago

Researchers are reporting another disappointment for efforts to cure infection with the AIDS virus. Six patients given blood-cell transplants similar to one that cured a man known as "the Berlin patient" have ...

Cambodia village reports mass HIV/AIDS infection

Dec 16, 2014

Cambodian health authorities on Tuesday said more than 80 people—including children and the elderly—who tested positive for HIV/AIDS in a single remote village may have been infected by contaminated needles.

Occasional heroin use may worsen HIV infection

Dec 15, 2014

Researchers at Yale and Boston University and their Russian collaborators have found that occasional heroin use by HIV-positive patients may be particularly harmful to the immune system and worsens HIV disease, compared to ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.