Sat, Mar 25, 2017 | updated 05:34 AM IST

New find brings HIV vaccine closer to reality

Updated: Aug 01, 2016 14:00 IST

Washington D.C, Aug 1 (ANI): A team of scientists has identified immunological profiles of people who make powerful HIV antibodies, paving the way for development of a vaccine.

People living with HIV who naturally produce broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) that may help suppress the virus have different immunological profiles than people who do not, researchers report.

While bNAbs cannot completely clear HIV infections in people who have already acquired the virus, many scientists believe a successful preventive HIV vaccine must induce bNAbs.

The new findings indicate that bNAb production may be associated with specific variations in individual immune functions that may be triggered by unchecked HIV infection. Defining how to safely replicate these attributes in HIV-uninfected vaccine recipients may lead to better designed experimental vaccines to protect against HIV.

Researchers led by a team at Duke University identified these immunologic variations by studying blood samples collected from people living with HIV by the NIAID-supported Center for HIV/AIDS Vaccine Immunology (CHAVI). The team compared blood samples from the 51 individuals with the highest level of bNAbs with samples taken from 51 individuals with few or no bNAbs present.

The analysis performed revealed that many variations in immune cell function triggered by chronic HIV infection are associated with high levels of bNAbs. The specific changes included a higher frequency of antibodies that attack one's own cells, called auto antibodies; fewer immune regulatory T cells, which were also less active in these individuals; and a higher frequency of memory T follicular helper immune cells.

With this immune system configuration, the activity of antibody-producing immune cells called B cells may be less restricted because they are supported by T follicular helper cells and may be hindered by regulatory T cells. This, in turn, could lead to more efficient production of protective bNAbs against HIV.

These findings support approaches to developing an HIV vaccine that involve modifying an individual's immune system to mimic these conditions through the addition of vaccine boosters called adjuvants or other means.

The study appears in journal Science Immunology. (ANI)

New Delhi [India], Mar. 24 (ANI): Continuing its efforts to raise awareness on tuberculosis and its diagnosis, Division of Clinical Microbiology & Molecular Medicine Department of Laboratory Medicine, AIIMS, and BD (Becton Dickinson India) for the third consecutive year organized a symposium today on "challenges in diagnosis and eradication of tuberculosis".

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Updated: Mar 22, 2017 09:30 IST

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Updated: Mar 22, 2017 09:20 IST

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Changes in blood may spur Alzheimer's disease

Updated: Mar 22, 2017 07:29 IST

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Spraying onto broken hearts to heal them

Updated: Mar 22, 2017 06:45 IST

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Prevent yourself from chronic kidney disease!

Updated: Mar 21, 2017 07:50 IST

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