MUC1 in human milk blocks transmission of human immunodeficiency virus from dendritic cells to T cells

ArticleinMolecular Immunology 46(11-12):2309-16 · May 2009with9 Reads
Impact Factor: 2.97 · DOI: 10.1016/j.molimm.2009.03.025 · Source: PubMed

    Abstract

    Mother-to-child transmission of human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) occurs frequently via breast-feeding. HIV-1 targets DC-SIGN+ dendritic cells (DCs) in mucosal areas that allow efficient transmission of the virus to T cells. Here, we demonstrate that the epithelial mucin MUC1, abundant in milk, efficiently bound to DC-SIGN on DC. The O-linked glycans within the mucin domain contained Lewis X structures, that were specifically recognized by the receptor. Interestingly, MUC1 prevented DC-SIGN-mediated transmission of HIV-1 from DCs to CD4+ T cells. We hypothesize that repetitive units of Lewis X, within the mucin domain, play an important role in inhibiting transmission of HIV-1 from mother to child.