Cow Antibodies May Lead To HIV Vaccine
In a new study, researchers may have found the link between cow's antibodies and a successful vaccination against the deadly HIV.
Cow's antibodies might become the new HIV vaccinations
"One approach to a preventive HIV vaccine involves trying to elicit broadly neutralising antibodies in healthy people, but so far the experiments have been unsuccessful, in both human and animal studies," said lead author Devin Sok, Director, Antibody Discovery and Development at the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI). "This experiment demonstrates that not only is it possible to produce these antibodies in animals, but we can do so reliably, quickly, and using a relatively simple immunisation strategy when given in the right setting," Sok added.
HIV tricks the immune system by displaying irrelevant forms of protein which distracts the system. Scientists believe that they have overcome this challenge by developing an immunogen called "BG505 SOSIP", which imitates the protein target. In the new study, four cows immunised with "BG505 SOSIP" elicited "bnAbs" to HIV within 35-52 days.
"Cows cannot be infected with HIV, of course. But these findings illuminate a new goal for HIV vaccine researchers: by increasing the number of human antibodies with long loops, we might have an easier chance of eliciting protective bnAbs by vaccination," the researchers noted.