[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The 2005 consensus proposal for the classification of hepatitis C virus (HCV) presented an agreed and uniform nomenclature for HCV variants and the criteria for their assignment into genotypes and subtypes. Since its publication, the available dataset of HCV sequences has vastly expanded through advancement in nucleotide sequencing technologies and an increasing focus on the role of HCV genetic variation in disease and treatment outcomes. The current study represents a major update to the previous consensus HCV classification, incorporating additional sequence information derived from over 1,300 (near-)complete genome sequences of HCV available on public databases in May 2013. Analysis resolved several nomenclature conflicts between genotype designations and using consensus criteria created a classification of HCV into seven confirmed genotypes and 67 subtypes. There are 21 additional complete coding region sequences of unassigned subtype. The study additionally describes the development of a Web resource hosted by the International Committee for Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV) that maintains and regularly updates tables of reference isolates, accession numbers, and annotated alignments (http://talk.ictvonline.org/links/hcv/hcv-classification.htm). The Flaviviridae Study Group urges those who need to check or propose new genotypes or subtypes of HCV to contact the Study Group in advance of publication to avoid nomenclature conflicts appearing in the literature. While the criteria for assigning genotypes and subtypes remain unchanged from previous consensus proposals, changes are proposed in the assignment of provisional subtypes, subtype numbering beyond “w,” and the nomenclature of intergenotypic recombinant. Conclusion: This study represents an important reference point for the consensus classification of HCV variants that will be of value to researchers working in clinical and basic science fields. (Hepatology 2014;59:318-327)
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: GB virus C (GBV-C), a pan-lymphotropic flavivirus capable of persistent infection, is associated with prolonged survival and reduced T-cell activation in HIV-infected patients. GBV-C was associated with reduced CD56brt/CD16 natural killer cell and monocyte activation, and a trend toward reduced B-cell activation by measuring cell surface activation markers or HIV entry coreceptors. The GBV-C association was independent of HIV viral load. Thus, GBV-C may influence non-T-cell immune activation in individuals with HIV infection.
AIDS (London, England) 07/2013; 27(11):1829-1832. · 4.91 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Viruses enter into complex interactions within human hosts, leading to facilitation or suppression of each other's replication. Upon coinfection, GB virus C (GBV-C) suppresses HIV-1 replication in vivo and in vitro, and GBV-C coinfection is associated with prolonged survival in HIV-infected people. GBV-C is a lymphotropic virus capable of persistent infection. GBV-C infection is associated with reduced T cell activation in HIV-infected humans, and immune activation is a critical component of HIV disease pathogenesis. We demonstrate that serum GBV-C particles inhibited activation of primary human T cells. T cell activation inhibition was mediated by the envelope glycoprotein E2, because expression of E2 inhibited TCR-mediated activation of Lck. The region on the E2 protein was characterized and revealed a highly conserved peptide motif sufficient to inhibit TCR-mediated signaling. The E2 region contained a predicted Lck substrate site, and substitution of an alanine or histidine for the tyrosine reversed TCR-signaling inhibition. GBV-C E2 protein and a synthetic peptide representing the inhibitory amino acid sequence were phosphorylated by Lck in vitro. The synthetic peptide also inhibited TCR-mediated activation of primary human CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells. Extracellular microvesicles from GBV-C E2-expressing cells contained E2 protein and inhibited TCR signaling in bystander T cells not expressing E2. Thus, GBV-C reduced global T cell activation via competition between its envelope protein E2 and Lck following TCR engagement. This novel inhibitory mechanism of T cell activation may provide new approaches for HIV and immunoactivation therapy.
The Journal of Immunology 05/2013; · 5.52 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: HIV infection is associated with elevated expression of IL-10 and PD-L1, contributing to impairment of T cell effector functions. In autoimmunity, tumor immunology, and some viral infections, Bregs modulate T cell function via IL-10 production. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that during HIV infection, Bregs attenuate CD8(+) T cell effector function, contributing to immune dysfunction. We determined that in vitro, TLR2-, TLR9-, and CD40L-costimulated Bregs from HIV(-) individuals exhibited a high frequency of cells expressing IL-10 and PD-L1. Compared with Bregs from HIV(-) individuals, a significantly higher percentage of Bregs from HIV(+) individuals spontaneously expressed IL-10 (P=0.0218). After in vitro stimulation with HIV peptides, Breg-depleted PBMCs from HIV(+) individuals exhibited a heightened frequency of cytotoxic (CD107a(+); P=0.0171) and HIV-specific CD8(+) T cells compared with total PBMCs. Furthermore, Breg depletion led to enhanced proliferation of total CD8(+) and CD107a(+)CD8(+) T cells (P=0.0280, and P=0.0102, respectively). In addition, augmented CD8(+) T cell effector function in vitro was reflected in a 67% increased clearance of infected CD4(+) T cells. The observed Breg suppression of CD8(+) T cell proliferation was IL-10-dependent. In HIV(+) individuals, Breg frequency correlated positively with viral load (r=0.4324; P=0.0095), immune activation (r=0.5978; P=0.0005), and CD8(+) T cell exhaustion (CD8(+)PD-1(+); r=0.5893; P=0.0101). Finally, the frequency of PD-L1-expressing Bregs correlated positively with CD8(+)PD-1(+) T cells (r=0.4791; P=0.0443). Our data indicate that Bregs contribute to HIV-infection associated immune dysfunction by T cell impairment, via IL-10 and possibly PD-L1 expression.
Journal of leukocyte biology 02/2013; · 4.99 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: GB virus type C (GBV-C) is a lymphotropic virus that can cause persistent infection in humans. GBV-C is not associated with any disease, but is associated with reduced mortality in HIV-infected individuals. Related viruses have been isolated from chimpanzees (GBV-Ccpz) and from new world primates (GBV-A). These viruses are also capable of establishing persistent infection. We determined the nucleotide sequence encoding the envelope glycoprotein (E2) of two GBV-Ccpz isolates obtained from the sera of captive chimpanzees. The deduced GBV-Ccpz E2 protein differed from human GBV-C by 31% at the amino acid level. Similar to human GBV-C E2, expression of GBV-Ccpz E2 in a tet-off human CD4+ Jurkat T cell line significantly inhibited the replication of diverse HIV isolates. This anti-HIV replication effect of GBV-Ccpz E2 protein was reversed by maintaining cells in doxycycline to reduce E2 expression. Previously, we found a 17 amino acid region within human GBV-C E2 that was sufficient to inhibit HIV. Although GBV-Ccpz E2 differed by three amino acid differences in this region, the chimpanzee GBV-C 17mer E2 peptide inhibited HIV replication. Similarly, the GBV-A peptide that aligns with this GBV-C E2 region inhibited HIV replication despite sharing only five amino acids with the human GBV-C E2 sequence. Thus, despite amino acid differences, the peptide region on both the GBV-Ccpz and GBV-A E2 protein inhibit HIV replication similar to human GBV-C. Consequently, GBV-Ccpz or GBV-A infection of nonhuman primates may provide an animal model to study GB virus--HIV interactions.
Journal of General Virology 01/2013; · 3.13 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: GB virus C (GBV-C) coinfection is associated with reduced immune activation and a block in CD4(+) T-cell proliferation following interleukin-2 (IL-2) therapy in HIV-infected individuals. We examined peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from HIV-infected subjects with and without GBV-C viraemia to determine if GBV-C correlated with reactivation of latent HIV, T-cell proliferation or T-cell survival following in vitro activation with phytohaemagglutinin A and IL-2 (PHA/IL-2). METHODS: HIV-infected subjects whose HIV viral load was suppressed on combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) for >6 months were studied. PBMCs were cultured with and without PHA/IL-2 and monitored for HIV reactivation, proliferation and survival. GBV-C viraemia and in vitro replication were detected by real-time RT-PCR. HIV reactivation was determined by measuring HIV p24 antigen in culture supernatants. Proliferation was measured by counting viable cells and survival measured by flow cytometry. RESULTS: Of 49 HIV-infected individuals, 26 had GBV-C viraemia. Significantly less HIV reactivation and PBMC proliferation following in vitro activation with PHA/IL-2 was observed in samples from GBV-C viraemic subjects compared with non-viraemic controls. Following 5 weeks in culture, GBV-C replication was associated with preservation of CD4(+) and CD8(+) T-cells compared with non-viraemic controls. CONCLUSIONS: GBV-C appears to inhibit immune activation and IL-2 signalling pathways, which might contribute to a reduction in reactivation of latent HIV from cellular reservoirs. In addition, GBV-C viraemia was associated with a reduction in activation-induced T-cell death. GBV-C-associated T-cell effects could contribute to the observed protective effect of GBV-C coinfection in HIV-infected individuals.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Double-negative T cells (DNTCs; ie, CD3(+)CD4(-)CD8(-) T cells) play a role in limiting chronic immune activation. GB virus C (GBV-C) infection is associated with reduced T-cell activation in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected individuals. T-cell activation and DNTCs were measured in HIV-infected subjects with a nondetectable HIV load. GBV-C-viremic subjects had significantly reduced CD4(+) and CD8(+) T-cell activation (P = .003 and .034, respectively) and significantly increased DNTCs (P = .038), compared with nonviremic subjects. GBV-C load correlated with DNTC percentage (P = .004). Thus, GBV-C infection is associated with an increase in DNTCs, which may contribute to reduced immune activation during HIV infection.
The Journal of Infectious Diseases 08/2012; 206(9):1469-72. · 5.85 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: GB virus type C (GBV-C) viremia is associated with reduced CD4+ T cell expansion following IL-2 therapy and with a reduction in T cell activation in HIV-infected individuals. The mechanism(s) by which GBV-C might alter T cell activation or IL-2 signaling have not been studied. In this study, we assess IL-2 release, IL-2R expression, IL-2 signaling, and cell proliferation in tet-off Jurkat cells expressing the GBV-C envelope glycoprotein (E2) following activation through the TCR. TCR activation was induced by incubation in anti-CD3/CD28 Abs. IL-2 release was measured by ELISA, STAT5 phosphorylation was assessed by immunoblot, and IL-2Rα (CD25) expression and cell proliferation were determined by flow cytometry. IL-2 and IL-2Rα steady-state mRNA levels were measured by real-time PCR. GBV-C E2 expression significantly inhibited IL-2 release, CD25 expression, STAT5 phosphorylation, and cellular proliferation in Jurkat cells following activation through the TCR compared with control cell lines. Reducing E2 expression by doxycycline reversed the inhibitory effects observed in the E2-expressing cells. The N-terminal 219 aa of E2 was sufficient to inhibit IL-2 signaling. Addition of purified recombinant GBV-C E2 protein to primary human CD4+ and CD8+ T cells inhibited TCR activation-induced IL-2 release and upregulation of IL-2Rα expression. These data provide evidence that the GBV-C E2 protein may contribute to the block in CD4+ T cell expansion following IL-2 therapy in HIV-infected individuals. Furthermore, the effects of GBV-C on IL-2 and IL-2-signaling pathways may contribute to the reduction in chronic immune activation observed in GBV-C/HIV-coinfected individuals.
The Journal of Immunology 07/2012; 189(5):2211-6. · 5.52 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Adjuvanted vaccines have the potential to improve influenza pandemic response. AS03 adjuvant has been shown to enhance the immune response to inactivated influenza vaccines. Methods: This trial was designed to evaluate the immunogenicity and safety of an inactivated 2009 H1N1 influenza vaccine at varying dosages of hemagglutinin with and without extemporaneously mixed AS03 adjuvant system in adults ≥ 18 years of age. Adults were randomized to receive 2 doses of 1 of 5 vaccine formulations (3.75 µg, 7.5 µg, or 15 µg with AS03 or 7.5 µg or 15 µg without adjuvant). Results: The study population included 544 persons <65 years of age and 245 persons ≥ 65 years of age. Local adverse events tended to be more frequent in the adjuvanted vaccine groups, but severe reactions were uncommon. In both age groups, hemagglutination inhibition antibody geometric mean titers after dose one were higher in the adjuvanted groups, compared with the 15 µg unadjuvanted group, and this difference was statistically significant for the comparison of the 15 µg adjuvanted group with the 15 µg unadjuvanted group. Conclusions: AS03 adjuvant system improves the immune response to inactivated 2009 H1N1 influenza vaccine in both younger and older adults and is generally well tolerated. ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00963157.
The Journal of Infectious Diseases 07/2012; 206(6):811-20. · 5.85 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background. GB virus type C (GBV-C) is transmitted by sexual or parenteral exposure and is prevalent among patients receiving blood products. GBV-C is associated with lower human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) RNA and better survival among HIV-infected patients. Open questions are the presence and the direction of any causal relationship between GBV-C infection and HIV disease markers in the context of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART). Methods. We used a limited access database obtained from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute's Viral Activation Transfusion Study (VATS), a randomized controlled trial of leukoreduced vs nonleukoreduced transfusions to HIV-infected transfusion-naive patients. Blood samples from 489 subjects were tested for GBV-C markers. Cox regression models and inverse probability of treatment weights were used to examine the association between GBV-C coinfection and mortality in the VATS cohort. Results. We found a significant reduction in mortality among GBV-C coinfected VATS subjects, after adjusting for HAART status, HIV RNA level, and CD4 cell count at baseline. Acquisition of GBV-C RNA (n = 39) was associated with lower mortality in 294 subjects who were GBV-C negative at baseline, adjusting for baseline covariates (hazard ratio = 0.22, 95% confidence interval [CI]: .08-.58) and in models in which weights were used to control for time-updated covariates (odds ratio = 0.21, 95% CI: .08-.60). Conclusions. GBV-C viremia is associated with lower mortality, and GBV-C acquisition via transfusion is associated with a significant reduction in mortality in HIV-infected individuals, controlling for HIV disease markers. These findings provide the first evidence that incident GBV-C infection alters mortality in HIV-infected patients.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: GB virus C (GBV-C) infection is associated with prolonged survival in HIV-infected cohorts, and GBV-C E2 protein inhibits HIV entry when added to CD4+ T cells. To further characterize E2 effects on HIV replication, stably transfected Jurkat cell lines expressing GBV-C E2 or control sequences were infected with HIV and replication was measured. HIV replication (all 6 isolates studied) was inhibited in all cell lines expressing a region of 17 amino acids of GBV-C E2, but not in cell lines expressing E2 without this region. In contrast, mumps and yellow fever virus replication was not inhibited by E2 protein expression. Synthetic GBV-C E2 17mer peptides did not inhibit HIV replication unless they were fused to a tat-protein-transduction-domain (TAT) for cellular uptake. These data identify the region of GBV-C E2 protein involved in HIV inhibition, and suggest that this GBV-C E2 peptide must gain entry into the cell to inhibit HIV.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) disease progression is associated with a helper T cell 1 (Th1) to helper T cell 2 (Th2) cytokine profile switch. Persistent GB virus type C (GBV-C) infection is associated with survival and a serum Th1 cytokine profile in HIV-infected individuals. We found that GBV-C infection increased gene expression of Th1 cytokines and decreased Th2 cytokine expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Furthermore, expression of GBV-C NS5A protein in a CD4(+) cell line resulted in upregulation of Th1 cytokines (tumor necrosis factor α) and downregulation of Th2 cytokines (interleukin 4, interleukin 5, interleukin 10, interleukin 13). GBV-C-induced modulation in T-cell cytokines may contribute to the beneficial effect of GBV-C in HIV-infected individuals.
The Journal of Infectious Diseases 04/2012; 206(1):69-72. · 5.85 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: GB virus C (GBV-C) infection is transmitted by blood exposure and associated with lower human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) load and slower HIV disease progression. Few studies describe predictors of acute GBV-C infection following transfusion in HIV-infected patients.
We used a limited-access database from the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute's Viral Activation Transfusion Study, a randomized controlled trial of leukoreduced versus nonleukoreduced transfusions received by HIV-infected, transfusion-naive patients. Blood samples from 489 subjects were tested for GBV-C markers in pretransfusion and posttransfusion samples. We estimated the risk of acquiring GBV-C RNA and predictors of GBV-C acquisition, using pooled logistic regression.
GBV-C RNA was detected ≤120 days following the first transfusion in 22 (7.5%) of 294 subjects who were GBV-C negative before transfusion. The risk of GBV-C RNA acquisition increased with each unit transfused (odds ratio, 1.09; 95% confidence interval, 1.06-1.11). Lower baseline HIV load and use of antiretroviral therapy were associated with subsequent GBV-C RNA acquisition, after control for units of blood transfused. Leukoreduced status of transfused units was not associated with GBV-C transmission.
Blood transfusion is associated with a significant risk of GBV-C acquisition among HIV-infected patients. Transmission of GBV-C by blood transfusion was inversely related to HIV load.
The Journal of Infectious Diseases 03/2012; 205(9):1436-42. · 5.85 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: GB virus C (GBV-C) is a lymphotropic human virus discovered in 1995 that is related to hepatitis C virus (HCV). GBV-C infection has not been convincingly associated with any disease; however, several studies found an association between persistent GBV-C infection and improved survival in HIV-positive individuals. GBV-C infection modestly alters T cell homeostasis in vivo through various mechanisms, including modulation of chemokine and cytokine release and receptor expression, and by diminution of T cell activation, proliferation and apoptosis, all of which may contribute to improved HIV clinical outcomes. In vitro studies confirm these clinical observations and demonstrate an anti-HIV replication effect of GBV-C. This review summarizes existing data on potential mechanisms by which GBV-C interferes with HIV, and the research needed to capitalize on this epidemiological observation.
Trends in Microbiology 02/2012; 20(3):124-30. · 8.43 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Two previous studies of a herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) subunit vaccine containing glycoprotein D in HSV-discordant couples revealed 73% and 74% efficacy against genital disease in women who were negative for both HSV type 1 (HSV-1) and HSV-2 antibodies. Efficacy was not observed in men or HSV-1 seropositive women.
We conducted a randomized, double-blind efficacy field trial involving 8323 women 18 to 30 years of age who were negative for antibodies to HSV-1 and HSV-2. At months 0, 1, and 6, some subjects received the investigational vaccine, consisting of 20 μg of glycoprotein D from HSV-2 with alum and 3-O-deacylated monophosphoryl lipid A as an adjuvant; control subjects received the hepatitis A vaccine, at a dose of 720 enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) units. The primary end point was occurrence of genital herpes disease due to either HSV-1 or HSV-2 from month 2 (1 month after dose 2) through month 20.
The HSV vaccine was associated with an increased risk of local reactions as compared with the control vaccine, and it elicited ELISA and neutralizing antibodies to HSV-2. Overall, the vaccine was not efficacious; vaccine efficacy was 20% (95% confidence interval [CI], -29 to 50) against genital herpes disease. However, efficacy against HSV-1 genital disease was 58% (95% CI, 12 to 80). Vaccine efficacy against HSV-1 infection (with or without disease) was 35% (95% CI, 13 to 52), but efficacy against HSV-2 infection was not observed (-8%; 95% CI, -59 to 26).
In a study population that was representative of the general population of HSV-1- and HSV-2-seronegative women, the investigational vaccine was effective in preventing HSV-1 genital disease and infection but not in preventing HSV-2 disease or infection. (Funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and GlaxoSmithKline; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00057330.).
New England Journal of Medicine 01/2012; 366(1):34-43. · 51.66 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: GBV-C infection is associated with prolonged survival and with reduced T cell activation in HIV-infected subjects not receiving combination antiretroviral therapy (cART). The relationship between GBV-C and T cell activation in HIV-infected subjects was examined. HIV-infected subjects on cART with non-detectable HIV viral load (VL) or cART naïve subjects were studied. GBV-C VL and HIV VL were determined. Cell surface markers of activation (CD38(+)/HLA-DR(+)), proliferation (Ki-67+), and HIV entry co-receptor expression (CCR5+ and CXCR4+) on total CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, and on naïve, central memory (CM), effector memory (EM), and effector CD4+ and CD8+ subpopulations were measured by flow cytometry. In subjects with suppressed HIV VL, GBV-C was consistently associated with reduced activation in naïve, CM, EM, and effector CD4+ cells. GBV-C was associated with reduced CD4+ and CD8+ T cell surface expression of activation and proliferation markers, independent of HIV VL classification. GBV-C was also associated with higher proportions of naïve CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, and with lower proportions of EM CD4+ and CD8+ T cells. In conclusion, GBV-C infection was associated with reduced activation of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells in both HIV viremic and HIV RNA suppressed patients. Those with GBV-C infection demonstrated an increased proportion of naive T cells and a reduction in T cell activation and proliferation independent of HIV VL classification, including those with suppressed HIV VL on cART. Since HIV pathogenesis is thought to be accelerated by T cell activation, these results may contribute to prolonged survival among HIV infected individuals co-infected with GBV-C. Furthermore, since cART therapy does not reduce T cell activation to levels seen in HIV-uninfected people, GBV-C infection may be beneficial for HIV-related diseases in those effectively treated with anti-HIV therapy.
PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(11):e50563. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A recent publication described finding GB virus C (GBV-C) RNA in 4 of 22 dromedary camel sera, and sequence analysis found that these viruses were phylogenetically clustered within human GBV-C isolates. Since all other GB viruses to date form monophyletic groups according to their host species, the close relationship between the sequences generated from camel sera and human GBV-C isolates seemed implausible, leading us to conduct an independent analysis of the sequences. Our investigation found three lines of evidence arguing against GBV-C infection in dromedary camels. First, strong evidence of artifactual sequence generation was identified for some of the sequences. Secondly, the sequence diversity within individual camel sera was 10-152-fold greater than that described for GBV-C within a human host. Finally, GBV-C sequences generated from each camel shared near complete identity with human isolates previously described by the same laboratory. Taken together, these data strongly suggest laboratory contamination. We suggest that additional validation experiments are needed before it is possible to conclude that camels are permissive for GBV-C infection.