Department of Medicine
Immunology of Infectious Disease | Virology
The fourth conserved region (C4) in the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env) gp120 is a structural element that is important for its function, as it binds to both the receptor CD4 and the co-receptor CCR5/CXCR4. It has long been known that this region is highly immunogenic and that it harbors B-cell as well as T-cell epitopes. It is the target of a number of antibodies in animal studies, which are called CD4-blockers. However, the mechanism by which the virus shields itself from such antibody responses is not known. Here, we determined the crystal structure of R53 in complex with its epitope peptide using a novel anti-C4 rabbit monoclonal antibody R53. Our data show that although the epitope of R53 covers a highly conserved sequence (433)AMYAPPI(439), it is in the gp120 trimer and in the CD4-bound conformation. Our results suggest a masking mechanism to explain how HIV-1 protects this critical region from the human immune system.
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Citation: Emerg Microbes Infect. 2015 Jul;4(7):e44. doi: 10.1038/emi.2015.44. Epub 2015 Jul 15. Link to article on publisher's site
DOI of Published Version
C4, CD4, Env, HIV-1, monoclonal antibody
Emerging microbes and infections
Pan, Ruimin; Chen, Yuxin; Vaine, Michael; Hu, Guangnan; Wang, Shixia; Lu, Shan; and Kong, Xiang-Peng, "Structural analysis of a novel rabbit monoclonal antibody R53 targeting an epitope in HIV-1 gp120 C4 region critical for receptor and co-receptor binding" (2015). Open Access Articles. 2701.
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