Nonneutralizing Human Antibody Fragments against Hepatitis C Virus E2 Glycoprotein Modulate Neutralization of Binding Activity of Human Recombinant Fabs
ABSTRACT Evidence from clinical and experimental studies indicates that hepatitis C virus E2 (HCV/E2) glycoprotein is the major target of a putatively protective immune response. However, even in the presence of a vigorous production of anti-HCV/E2 antibodies, reinfection can occur. Dissection of the human immune response against HCV/E2 indicated that blocking of binding of HCV/E2 to target cells [neutralization of binding (NOB) activity] varies widely among antibody clones. Moreover, in vivo, simultaneous binding of antibodies to distinct epitopes can induce conformational changes and synergies that may be relevant to understanding the anti-HCV immune response. In this study, human recombinant Fabs were generated by affinity-selecting a phage display repertoire library with antibody-coated HCV/E2. These Fabs, which share the same complementarity-determining region DNA sequences, had higher affinity than other anti-HCV/E2 Fabs but showed no NOB activity even at the highest concentrations. Binding of Fabs to HCV/E2 caused conformational changes modifying Fab-binding patterns and reducing, with a negative synergistic effect, Fab-mediated NOB activity. These data suggest that some antibody clones have the potential to modify HCV/E2 conformation and that, in this state, binding of this glycoprotein to its cellular target is less prone to inhibition by some antibody clones. This can explain why high anti-HCV/E2 antibody titers do not directly correlate with protection from infection. Information on the interactions among different antibody clones can contribute to understanding virus–host interplay and developing more effective vaccines.
Article: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection may elicit neutralizing antibodies targeting epitopes conserved in all viral genotypes.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Anti-hepatitis C virus (HCV) cross-neutralizing human monoclonal antibodies, directed against conserved epitopes on surface E2 glycoprotein, are central tools for understanding virus-host interplay, and for planning strategies for prevention and treatment of this infection. Recently, we developed a research aimed at identifying these antibody specificities. The characteristics of one of these antibodies (Fab e20) were addressed in this study. Firstly, using immunofluorescence and FACS analysis of cells expressing envelope HCV glycoproteins, Fab e20 was able to recognize all HCV genotypes. Secondly, competition assays with a panel of mouse and rat monoclonals, and alanine scanning mutagenesis analyses located the e20 epitope within the CD81 binding site, documenting that three highly conserved HCV/E2 residues (W529, G530 and D535) are critical for e20 binding. Finally, a strong neutralizing activity against HCV pseudoparticles (HCVpp) incorporating envelope glycoproteins of genotypes 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b and 4, and against the cell culture-grown (HCVcc) JFH1 strain, was observed. The data highlight that neutralizing antibodies against HCV epitopes present in all HCV genotypes are elicited during natural infection. Their availability may open new avenues to the understanding of HCV persistence and to the development of strategies for the immune control of this infection.PLoS ONE 01/2009; 4(12):e8254. · 4.09 Impact Factor
Article: Intracytoplasmic stable expression of IgG1 antibody targeting NS3 helicase inhibits replication of highly efficient hepatitis C Virus 2a clone.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a major public health problem with more than 170 million cases of chronic infections worldwide. There is no protective vaccine currently available for HCV, therefore the development of novel strategy to prevent chronic infection is important. We reported earlier that a recombinant human antibody clone blocks viral NS3 helicase activity and inhibits replication of HCV 1b virus. This study was performed further to explore the mechanism of action of this recombinant antibody and to determine whether or not this antibody inhibits replication and infectivity of a highly efficient JFH1 HCV 2a virus clone. The antiviral effect of intracellular expressed antibody against the HCV 2a virus strain was examined using a full-length green fluorescence protein (GFP) labeled infectious cell culture system. For this purpose, a Huh-7.5 cell line stably expressing the NS3 helicase gene specific IgG1 antibody was prepared. Replication of full-length HCV-GFP chimera RNA and negative-strand RNA was strongly inhibited in Huh-7.5 cells stably expressing NS3 antibody but not in the cells expressing an unrelated control antibody. Huh-7.5 cells stably expressing NS3 helicase antibody effectively suppressed infectious virus production after natural infection and the level of HCV in the cell free supernatant remained undetectable after first passage. In contrast, Huh-7.5 cells stably expressing an control antibody against influenza virus had no effect on virus production and high-levels of infectious HCV were detected in culture supernatants over four rounds of infectivity assay. A recombinant adenovirus based expression system was used to demonstrate that Huh-7.5 replicon cell line expressing the intracellular antibody strongly inhibited the replication of HCV-GFP RNA. Recombinant human anti-HCV NS3 antibody clone inhibits replication of HCV 2a virus and infectious virus production. Intracellular expression of this recombinant antibody offers a potential antiviral strategy to inhibit intracellular HCV replication and production.Virology Journal 01/2010; 7:118. · 2.34 Impact Factor
Article: Human monoclonal antibodies to a novel cluster of conformational epitopes on HCV E2 with resistance to neutralization escape in a genotype 2a isolate.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The majority of broadly neutralizing antibodies to hepatitis C virus (HCV) are against conformational epitopes on the E2 glycoprotein. Many of them recognize overlapping epitopes in a cluster, designated as antigenic domain B, that contains residues G530 and D535. To gain information on other regions that will be relevant for vaccine design, we employed yeast surface display of antibodies that bound to genotype 1a H77C E2 mutant proteins containing a substitution either at Y632A (to avoid selecting non-neutralizing antibodies) or D535A. A panel of nine human monoclonal antibodies (HMAbs) was isolated and designated as HC-84-related antibodies. Each HMAb neutralized cell culture infectious HCV (HCVcc) with genotypes 1-6 envelope proteins with varying profiles, and each inhibited E2 binding to the viral receptor CD81. Five of these antibodies neutralized representative genotypes 1-6 HCVcc. Epitope mapping identified a cluster of overlapping epitopes that included nine contact residues in two E2 regions encompassing aa418-446 and aa611-616. Effect on virus entry was measured using H77C HCV retroviral pseudoparticles, HCVpp, bearing an alanine substitution at each of the contact residues. Seven of ten mutant HCVpp showed over 90% reduction compared to wild-type HCVpp and two others showed approximately 80% reduction. Interestingly, four of these antibodies bound to a linear E2 synthetic peptide encompassing aa434-446. This region on E2 has been proposed to elicit non-neutralizing antibodies in humans that interfere with neutralizing antibodies directed at an adjacent E2 region from aa410-425. The isolation of four HC-84 HMAbs binding to the peptide, aa434-446, proves that some antibodies to this region are to highly conserved epitopes mediating broad virus neutralization. Indeed, when HCVcc were passaged in the presence of each of these antibodies, virus escape was not observed. Thus, the cluster of HC-84 epitopes, designated as antigenic domain D, is relevant for vaccine design for this highly diverse virus.PLoS Pathogens 04/2012; 8(4):e1002653. · 9.13 Impact Factor