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HIV Combination Therapies Could Prevent Viral Escape, Rebound

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A human H9 T cell infected by HIV.

Antiretroviral therapy reduces the ability of HIV to multiply and create new variants, limiting the genetic diversity of the viral population and lowering the likelihood for emergence of bNAb escape variants.

Credit: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

Researchers at the University of Washington and Germany's Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization and University of Cologne designed a novel therapy for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that could prevent the virus from escaping treatment.

The researchers found computationally selecting viral combinations of broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) based on HIV genetics could help block viral escape.

The bNAb antibody subset can recognize multiple HIV strains, and the researchers used high-throughput DNA sequencing to analyze the genomes of HIV viruses collected over a decade from 11 untreated carriers.

The team used the data to predict which strains might be able to escape treatment with different bNAbs, and whether evolving to evade bNAbs carried a survival cost. It then forecast rebounds in three real-life bNAb trials, and formulated a bNAb combination that minimizes the chances of viral escape.

From University of Washington News
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Abstracts Copyright © 2022 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


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