Mimicry of an HIV broadly neutralizing antibody epitope with a synthetic glycopeptide.
ABSTRACT: A goal for an HIV-1 vaccine is to overcome virus variability by inducing broadly neutralizing antibodies (bnAbs). One key target of bnAbs is the glycan-polypeptide at the base of the envelope (Env) third variable loop (V3). We have designed and synthesized a homogeneous minimal immunogen with high-mannose glycans reflective of a native Env V3-glycan bnAb epitope (Man9-V3). V3-glycan bnAbs bound to Man9-V3 glycopeptide and native-like gp140 trimers with similar affinities. Fluorophore-labeled Man9-V3 glycopeptides bound to bnAb memory B cells and were able to be used to isolate a V3-glycan bnAb from an HIV-1-infected individual. In rhesus macaques, immunization with Man9-V3 induced V3-glycan-targeted antibodies. Thus, the Man9-V3 glycopeptide closely mimics an HIV-1 V3-glycan bnAb epitope and can be used to isolate V3-glycan bnAbs.
Project description:HIV-1 envelope (Env) mimetics are candidate components of prophylactic vaccines and potential therapeutics. Here we use a synthetic V3-glycopeptide ("Man9-V3") for structural studies of an HIV Env third variable loop (V3)-glycan directed, broadly neutralizing antibody (bnAb) lineage ("DH270"), to visualize the epitope on Env and to study how affinity maturation of the lineage proceeded. Unlike many previous V3 mimetics, Man9-V3 encompasses two key features of the V3 region recognized by V3-glycan bnAbs-the conserved GDIR motif and the N332 glycan. In our structure of an antibody fragment of a lineage member, DH270.6, in complex with the V3 glycopeptide, the conformation of the antibody-bound glycopeptide conforms closely to that of the corresponding segment in an intact HIV-1 Env trimer. An additional structure identifies roles for two critical mutations in the development of breadth. The results suggest a strategy for use of a V3 glycopeptide as a vaccine immunogen.
Project description:Broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) isolated from HIV-1-infected individuals inform HIV-1 vaccine design efforts. Developing bNAbs with increased efficacy requires understanding how antibodies interact with the native oligomannose and complex-type N-glycan shield that hides most protein epitopes on HIV-1 envelope (Env). Here we present crystal structures, including a 3.8-Å X-ray free electron laser dataset, of natively glycosylated Env trimers complexed with BG18, the most potent V3/N332gp120 glycan-targeting bNAb reported to date. Our structures show conserved contacts mediated by common D gene-encoded residues with the N332gp120 glycan and the gp120 GDIR peptide motif, but a distinct Env-binding orientation relative to PGT121/10-1074 bNAbs. BG18's binding orientation provides additional contacts with N392gp120 and N386gp120 glycans near the V3-loop base and engages protein components of the V1-loop. The BG18-natively-glycosylated Env structures facilitate understanding of bNAb-glycan interactions critical for using V3/N332gp120 bNAbs therapeutically and targeting their epitope for immunogen design.
Project description:Eliciting broadly neutralizing antibody (bNAb) responses against HIV-1 is a major goal for a prophylactic HIV-1 vaccine. One approach is to design immunogens based on known broadly neutralizing epitopes. Here we report the design and synthesis of an HIV-1 glycopeptide immunogen derived from the V3 domain. We performed glycopeptide epitope mapping to determine the minimal glycopeptide sequence as the epitope of V3-glycan-specific bNAbs PGT128 and 10-1074. We further constructed a self-adjuvant three-component immunogen that consists of a 33-mer V3 glycopeptide epitope, a universal T helper epitope P30, and a lipopeptide (Pam3CSK4) that serves as a ligand of Toll-like receptor 2. Rabbit immunization revealed that the synthetic self-adjuvant glycopeptide could elicit substantial glycan-dependent antibodies that exhibited broader recognition of HIV-1 gp120s than the non-glycosylated V3 peptide. These results suggest that the self-adjuvant synthetic glycopeptides can serve as an important component to elicit glycan-specific antibodies in HIV vaccine design.
Project description:The HIV-1 envelope (Env) undergoes conformational changes during infection. Broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) are typically isolated by using soluble Env trimers, which do not capture all Env states. To address these limitations, we devised a vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV)-based probe to display membrane-embedded Env trimers and isolated five bNAbs from two chronically infected donors, M4008 and M1214. Donor B cell receptor (BCR) repertoires identified two bNAb lineages, M4008_N1 and M1214_N1, that class-switched to immunoglobulin G (IgG) and IgA. Variants of these bNAbs reconstituted as IgA demonstrated broadly neutralizing activity, and the IgA fraction of M1214 plasma conferred neutralization. M4008_N1 epitope mapping revealed a glycan-independent V3 epitope conferring tier 2 virus neutralization. A 4.86-Å-resolution cryogenic electron microscopy (cryo-EM) structure of M1214_N1 complexed with CH505 SOSIP revealed another elongated epitope, the V2V5 corridor, extending from V2 to V5. Overall, the VSVENV probe identified bNAb lineages with neutralizing IgG and IgA members targeting distinct sites of HIV-1 Env vulnerability.
Project description:Induction of broadly neutralizing antibodies (bnAbs) that target HIV-1 envelope (Env) is a goal of HIV-1 vaccine development. A bnAb target is the Env third variable loop (V3)-glycan site. To determine whether immunization could induce antibodies to the V3-glycan bnAb binding site, we repetitively immunized macaques over a 4-year period with an Env expressing V3-high mannose glycans. Env immunizations elicited plasma antibodies that neutralized HIV-1 expressing only high-mannose glycans-a characteristic shared by early bnAb B cell lineage members. A rhesus recombinant monoclonal antibody from a vaccinated macaque bound to the V3-glycan site at the same amino acids as broadly neutralizing antibodies. A structure of the antibody bound to glycan revealed that the three variable heavy-chain complementarity-determining regions formed a cavity into which glycan could insert and neutralized multiple HIV-1 isolates with high-mannose glycans. Thus, HIV-1 Env vaccination induced mannose-dependent antibodies with characteristics of V3-glycan bnAb precursors.
Project description:A preventive HIV-1 vaccine should induce HIV-1-specific broadly neutralizing antibodies (bnAbs). However, bnAbs generally require high levels of somatic hypermutation (SHM) to acquire breadth, and current vaccine strategies have not been successful in inducing bnAbs. Because bnAbs directed against a glycosylated site adjacent to the third variable loop (V3) of the HIV-1 envelope protein require limited SHM, the V3-glycan epitope is an attractive vaccine target. By studying the cooperation among multiple V3-glycan B cell lineages and their coevolution with autologous virus throughout 5 years of infection, we identify key events in the ontogeny of a V3-glycan bnAb. Two autologous neutralizing antibody lineages selected for virus escape mutations and consequently allowed initiation and affinity maturation of a V3-glycan bnAb lineage. The nucleotide substitution required to initiate the bnAb lineage occurred at a low-probability site for activation-induced cytidine deaminase activity. Cooperation of B cell lineages and an improbable mutation critical for bnAb activity defined the necessary events leading to breadth in this V3-glycan bnAb lineage. These findings may, in part, explain why initiation of V3-glycan bnAbs is rare, and suggest an immunization strategy for inducing similar V3-glycan bnAbs.
Project description:HIV-1 broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) are being explored as passively administered therapeutic and preventative agents. However, the extensively diversified HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins (Env) rapidly acquire mutations to evade individual bNAbs in monotherapy regimens. The use of a "single" agent to simultaneously target distinct Env epitopes is desirable to overcome viral diversity. Here, we report the use of tandem single-chain variable fragment (ScFv) domains of two bNAbs, specific for the CD4-binding site and V3 glycan patch, to form anti-HIV-1 bispecific ScFvs (Bi-ScFvs). The optimal Bi-ScFv crosslinks adjacent protomers within one HIV-1 Env spike and has greater neutralization breadth than its parental bNAbs. Furthermore, the combination of this Bi-ScFv with a third bNAb recognizing the Env membrane proximal external region (MPER) results in a trispecific bNAb, which has nearly pan-isolate neutralization breadth and high potency. Thus, multispecific antibodies combining functional moieties of bNAbs could achieve outstanding neutralization capacity with augmented avidity.
Project description:Broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) can prevent and control an HIV-1 infection, but their breadth is invariably too limited for use as monotherapy. To address this problem, bi- and trispecific antibody-like constructs have been developed. These engineered antibodies typically have greater breadth than the native bNAbs from which they were derived, but they are not more potent because they do not, in most cases, simultaneously engage more than a single epitope of the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env). Here, we describe a new class of bispecific antibodies targeting the V2-glycan (apex) and V3-glycan regions of the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (Env). Specifically, bispecific antibodies with a single-chain (scFv) form of the CAP256.VRC26.25 V2-glycan (apex) antibody on one antibody arm and a full V3-glycan Fab on the other arm neutralizes more HIV-1 isolates than the bNAbs from which they were derived. Moreover, these bispecific antibodies are markedly more potent than their parental bNAbs, likely because they simultaneously engage both the apex and V3-glycan epitopes of Env. Our data show that simultaneous engagement of two critical epitopes of a single Env trimer can markedly increase the potency of a bispecific antibody.IMPORTANCE Broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) can prevent a new HIV-1 infection and can at least temporarily suppress an established infection. However, antibody-resistant viruses rapidly emerge in infected persons treated with any single bNAb. Several bispecific antibodies have been developed to increase the breadth of these antibodies, but typically only one arm of these bispecific constructs binds the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein trimer (Env). Here, we develop and characterize bispecific constructs based on well-characterized V2-glycan and V3-glycan bNAbs and show that at least one member of this class is more potent than its parental antibodies, indicating that they can simultaneously bind both of these epitopes of a single Env trimer. These data show that bispecific antibody-like proteins can achieve greater neutralization potency than the bNAbs from which they were derived.
Project description:V3-glycan-targeting broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) are a focus of HIV-1 vaccine development. Understanding the viral dynamics that stimulate the development of these antibodies can provide insights for immunogen design. We used a deep-sequencing approach, together with neutralization phenotyping, to investigate the rate and complexity of escape from V3-glycan-directed bNAbs compared to overlapping early strain-specific neutralizing antibody (ssNAb) responses to the V3/C3 region in donor CAP177. Escape from the ssNAb response occurred rapidly via an N334-to-N332 glycan switch, which took just 7.5 weeks to reach >50% frequency. In contrast, escape from the bNAbs was mediated via multiple pathways and took longer, with escape first occurring through an increase in V1 loop length, which took 46 weeks to reach 50% frequency, followed by an N332-to-N334 reversion, which took 66 weeks. Importantly, bNAb escape was incomplete, with contemporaneous neutralization observed up to 3 years postinfection. Both the ssNAb response and the bNAb response were modulated by the presence/absence of the N332 glycan, indicating an overlap between the two epitopes. Thus, selective pressure by ssNAbs to maintain the N332 glycan may have constrained the bNAb escape pathway. This slower and incomplete viral escape resulted in prolonged exposure of the bNAb epitope, which may in turn have aided the maturation of the bNAb lineage.IMPORTANCE The development of an HIV-1 vaccine is of paramount importance, and broadly neutralizing antibodies are likely to be a key component of a protective vaccine. The V3-glycan-targeting bNAb responses are among the most promising vaccine targets, as they are commonly elicited during infection. Understanding the interplay between viral evolution and the development of these antibodies provides insights that may guide immunogen design. Our work contrasted the dynamics of the early strain-specific antibodies and the later broadly neutralizing responses to a common Env target (V3C3), showing slower and more complex escape from bNAbs. Constrained bNAb escape, together with evidence of contemporaneous autologous virus neutralization, supports the proposal that prolonged exposure of the bNAb epitope enabled the maturation of the bNAb lineage.
Project description:Peptide immunogens provide an approach to focus antibody responses to specific neutralizing sites on the HIV envelope protein (Env) trimer or on other pathogens. However, the physical characteristics of peptide immunogens can limit their pharmacokinetic and immunological properties. Here, we have designed synthetic "star" nanoparticles based on biocompatible N-[(2-hydroxypropyl)methacrylamide] (HPMA)-based polymer arms extending from a poly(amidoamine) (PAMAM) dendrimer core. In mice, these star nanoparticles trafficked to lymph nodes (LNs) by 4 hours following vaccination, where they were taken up by subcapsular macrophages and then resident dendritic cells (DCs). Immunogenicity optimization studies revealed a correlation of immunogen density with antibody titers. Furthermore, the co-delivery of Env variable loop 3 (V3) and T-helper peptides induced titers that were 2 logs higher than if the peptides were given in separate nanoparticles. Finally, we performed a nonhuman primate (NHP) study using a V3 glycopeptide minimal immunogen that was structurally optimized to be recognized by Env V3/glycan broadly neutralizing antibodies (bnAbs). When administered with a potent Toll-like receptor (TLR) 7/8 agonist adjuvant, these nanoparticles elicited high antibody binding titers to the V3 site. Similar to human V3/glycan bnAbs, certain monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) elicited by this vaccine were glycan dependent or targeted the GDIR peptide motif. To improve affinity to native Env trimer affinity, nonhuman primates (NHPs) were boosted with various SOSIP Env proteins; however, significant neutralization was not observed. Taken together, this study provides a new vaccine platform for administration of glycopeptide immunogens for focusing immune responses to specific bnAb epitopes.