Newly discovered broadly neutralizing antibodies appear to block HIV from entering and infecting human immune cells. These include two antibodies that thwart more than 90 percent of circulating HIV-1 strains, a discovery that may aid in the development of a vaccine.
VRC01 (green and blue) binding to the gp120
envelope glycoprotein (gray) and the
HIV-1 site of vulnerability (red).

Image courtesy of Peter Kwong, Jonathan Stuckey,
Tongquing Zhou
The researcher team, composed mainly of scientists with the National Institutes of Health, reports the linkurl:findings; and details of a new method used to single out the antibodies from the blood of an HIV-positive patient using a specially designed glycoprotein probe on __Science__'s website today (8th July). The new antibody detection method "is an extraordinary hook that has allowed them to fish out antibodies that are unique and special," linkurl:Munir Alam;, an immunologist at Duke University's Human Vaccine Institute who was not...
X. Wu, et al., linkurl:"Rational Design of Envelope Surface Identifies Broadly Neutralizing Human Monoclonal Antibodies to HIV-1,"; __Science__, published online 8 July 2010, doi: 10.1126/science.1187659.T. Zhou, et al., linkurl:"Structural Basis for Broad and Potent Neutralization of HIV-1 by Antibody VRC01,"; __Science__, published online 8 July 2010, doi: 10.1126/science.1192819.

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