Development and characterization of a severe acute respiratory syndrome-associated coronavirus-neutralizing human monoclonal antibody that provides effective immunoprophylaxis in mice

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Pediatrics; Massachusetts Biologic Laboratories; Program in Molecular Medicine

Publication Date


Document Type



Animals; Antibodies, Monoclonal; Antibodies, Viral; Cells, Cultured; Disease Models, Animal; Epitope Mapping; Epitopes; Female; *Immunization, Passive; Lung; Membrane Glycoproteins; Mice; Mice, Inbred BALB C; Mice, Transgenic; Neutralization Tests; Protein Binding; SARS Virus; Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome; Viral Envelope Proteins


Immunology and Infectious Disease | Pediatrics


BACKGROUND: Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) remains a significant public health concern after the epidemic in 2003. Human monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) that neutralize SARS-associated coronavirus (SARS-CoV) could provide protection for exposed individuals.

METHODS: Transgenic mice with human immunoglobulin genes were immunized with the recombinant major surface (S) glycoprotein ectodomain of SARS-CoV. Epitopes of 2 neutralizing MAbs derived from these mice were mapped and evaluated in a murine model of SARS-CoV infection.

RESULTS: Both MAbs bound to S glycoprotein expressed on transfected cells but differed in their ability to block binding of S glycoprotein to Vero E6 cells. Immunoprecipitation analysis revealed 2 antibody-binding epitopes: one MAb (201) bound within the receptor-binding domain at aa 490-510, and the other MAb (68) bound externally to the domain at aa 130-150. Mice that received 40 mg/kg of either MAb prior to challenge with SARS-CoV were completely protected from virus replication in the lungs, and doses as low as 1.6 mg/kg offered significant protection.

CONCLUSIONS: Two neutralizing epitopes were defined for MAbs to SARS-CoV S glycoprotein. Antibodies to both epitopes protected mice against SARS-CoV challenge. Clinical trials are planned to test MAb 201, a fully human MAb specific for the epitope within the receptor-binding region.

DOI of Published Version



J Infect Dis. 2005 Feb 15;191(4):507-14. Epub 2005 Jan 14. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

The Journal of infectious diseases

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID