A potent human neutralizing antibody Fc-dependently reduces established HBV infections.
ABSTRACT: Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is a major global health problem. Currently-available therapies are ineffective in curing chronic HBV infection. HBV and its satellite hepatitis D virus (HDV) infect hepatocytes via binding of the preS1 domain of its large envelope protein to sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP). Here, we developed novel human monoclonal antibodies that block the engagement of preS1 with NTCP and neutralize HBV and HDV with high potency. One antibody, 2H5-A14, functions at picomolar level and exhibited neutralization-activity-mediated prophylactic effects. It also acts therapeutically by eliciting antibody-Fc-dependent immunological effector functions that impose durable suppression of viral infection in HBV-infected mice, resulting in reductions in the levels of the small envelope antigen and viral DNA, with no emergence of escape mutants. Our results illustrate a novel antibody-Fc-dependent approach for HBV treatment and suggest 2H5-A14 as a novel clinical candidate for HBV prevention and treatment of chronic HBV infection.
Project description:The hepatic Na+/taurocholate co-transporting polypeptide (NTCP in man, Ntcp in animals) is the high-affinity receptor for the hepatitis B (HBV) and hepatitis D (HDV) viruses. Species barriers for human HBV/HDV within the order Primates were previously attributed to Ntcp sequence variations that disable virus-receptor interaction. However, only a limited number of primate Ntcps have been analysed so far. In the present study, a total of 11 Ntcps from apes, Old and New World monkeys were cloned and expressed in vitro to characterise their interaction with HBV and HDV. All Ntcps showed intact bile salt transport. Human NTCP as well as the Ntcps from the great apes chimpanzee and orangutan showed transport-competing binding of HBV derived myr-preS1-peptides. In contrast, all six Ntcps from the group of Old World monkeys were insensitive to HBV myr-preS1-peptide binding and HBV/HDV infection. This is basically predetermined by the amino acid arginine at position 158 of all studied Old World monkey Ntcps. An exchange from arginine to glycine (as present in humans and great apes) at this position (R158G) alone was sufficient to achieve full transport-competing HBV myr-preS1-peptide binding and susceptibility for HBV/HDV infection. New World monkey Ntcps showed higher sequence heterogeneity, but in two cases with 158G showed transport-competing HBV myr-preS1-peptide binding, and in one case (Saimiri sciureus) even susceptibility for HBV/HDV infection. In conclusion, amino acid position 158 of NTCP/Ntcp is sufficient to discriminate between the HBV/HDV susceptible group of humans and great apes (158G) and the non-susceptible group of Old World monkeys (158R). In the case of the phylogenetically more distant New World monkey Ntcps amino acid 158 plays a significant, but not exclusive role.
Project description:Chronic hepatitis B, C and D virus (HBV, HCV, HDV) infections are leading causes of liver disease and cancer worldwide. Although these viruses differ markedly in their life cycle and genomic organization, they exclusively infect hepatocytes. Recently, the sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP) was identified as the first functional receptor for HBV and HDV. Here, we report that NTCP also facilitates HCV entry into human hepatocytes, by augmenting the bile acid-mediated repression of IFN-stimulated genes (ISGs), including IFITM2 and IFITM3, to increase the susceptibility of cells to HCV entry. Furthermore, an HBV-derived preS1 peptide, known to bind NTCP and to inhibit bile acid uptake and HBV infection, inhibits HCV entry by enhancing the expression of ISGs. Our study highlights NTCP as a novel player linking bile acid metabolism to the interferon response in hepatocytes and establishes a role for NTCP in the entry process of multiple hepatotropic viruses, via distinct mechanisms. Collectively, these findings enhance our understanding of hepatitis virus-host interactions and suggest NTCP as an attractive antiviral target for HBV/HCV co-infection. Transcriptome profiling by DNA microarray of Huh7.5.1 cells transduced to express NTCP.
Project description:This study examined how the envelope proteins of 25 variants of hepatitis B virus (HBV) genotypes A to I support hepatitis delta virus (HDV) infectivity. The assembled virions bore the same HDV ribonucleoprotein and differed only by the HBV variant-specific envelope proteins coating the particles. The total HDV yields varied within a 122-fold range. A residue Y (position 374) in the HDV binding site was identified as critical for HDV assembly. Virions that bound antibodies, which recognize the region that includes the HBV matrix domain and predominantly but not exclusively immunoprecipitate the PreS1-containing virions, were termed PreS1*-HDVs. Using in vitro infection of primary human hepatocytes (PHH), we measured the specific infectivity (SI), which is the number of HDV genomes/cell produced by infection and normalized by the PreS1*-MOI, which is the multiplicity of infection that reflects the number of PreS1*-HDVs per cell in the inoculum used. The SI values varied within a 160-fold range and indicated a probable HBV genotype-specific trend of D > B > E > A in supporting HDV infectivity. Three variants, of genotypes B, C, and D, supported the highest SI values. We also determined the normalized index (NI) of infected PHH, which is the percentage of HDV-infected hepatocytes normalized by the PreS1*-MOI. Comparison of the SI and NI values revealed that, while a particular HBV variant may facilitate the infection of a relatively significant fraction of PHH, it may not always result in a considerable number of genomes that initiated replication after entry. The potential implications of these findings are discussed in the context of the mechanism of attachment/entry of HBV and HDV.The study advances the understanding of the mechanisms of (i) attachment and entry of HDV and HBV and (ii) transmission of HDV infection/disease.
Project description:The liver bile acids transporter sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP) is responsible for the majority of sodium-dependent bile salts uptake by hepatocytes. NTCP also functions as a cellular receptor for viral entry of hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis D virus (HDV) through a specific interaction between NTCP and the pre-S1 domain of HBV large envelope protein. However, it remains unknown if these two functions of NTCP are independent or if they interfere with each other. Here we show that binding of the pre-S1 domain to human NTCP blocks taurocholate uptake by the receptor; conversely, some bile acid substrates of NTCP inhibit HBV and HDV entry. Mutations of NTCP residues critical for bile salts binding severely impair viral infection by HDV and HBV; to a lesser extent, the residues important for sodium binding also inhibit viral infection. The mutation S267F, corresponding to a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) found in about 9% of the East Asian population, renders NTCP without either taurocholate transporting activity or the ability to support HBV or HDV infection in cell culture. These results demonstrate that molecular determinants critical for HBV and HDV entry overlap with that for bile salts uptake by NTCP, indicating that viral infection may interfere with the normal function of NTCP, and bile acids and their derivatives hold the potential for further development into antiviral drugs.Human hepatitis B virus (HBV) and its satellite virus, hepatitis D virus (HDV), are important human pathogens. Available therapeutics against HBV are limited, and there is no drug that is clinically available for HDV infection. A liver bile acids transporter (sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide [NTCP]) critical for maintaining homeostasis of bile acids serves as a functional receptor for HBV and HDV. We report here that the NTCP-binding lipopeptide that originates from the first 47 amino acids of the pre-S1 domain of the HBV L protein blocks taurocholate transport. Some bile salts dose dependently inhibit HBV and HDV infection mediated by NTCP; molecular determinants of NTCP critical for HBV and HDV entry overlap with that for bile acids transport. This work advances our understanding of NTCP-mediated HBV and HDV infection in relation to NTCP's physiological function. Our results also suggest that bile acids or their derivatives hold potential for development into novel drugs against HBV and HDV infection.
Project description:Chronic hepatitis B, C and D virus (HBV, HCV, HDV) infections are leading causes of liver disease and cancer worldwide. Although these viruses differ markedly in their life cycle and genomic organization, they exclusively infect hepatocytes. Recently, the sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP) was identified as the first functional receptor for HBV and HDV. Here, we report that NTCP also facilitates HCV entry into human hepatocytes, by augmenting the bile acids-mediated repression of IFN-stimulated genes (ISGs), including IFITM2 and IFITM3, to increase the susceptibility of cells to HCV entry. Furthermore, an HBV-derived preS1 peptide, known to bind NTCP and to inhibit bile acids uptake and HBV infection, inhibits HCV entry by enhancing the expression of ISGs. Our study highlights NTCP as a novel player linking bile acids metabolism to the interferon response in hepatocytes and establishes a role for NTCP in the entry process of multiple hepatotropic viruses, via distinct mechanisms. Collectively, these findings enhance our understanding of hepatitis virus-host interactions and suggest NTCP as an attractive antiviral target for HBV/HCV co-infection. Overall design: Transcriptome profiling by DNA microarray of primary human hepatocytes.
Project description:Human hepatitis B virus (HBV) and its satellite virus, hepatitis D virus (HDV), primarily infect humans, chimpanzees, or tree shrews (Tupaia belangeri). Viral infections in other species are known to be mainly restricted at the entry level since viral replication can be achieved in the cells by transfection of the viral genome. Sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP) is a functional receptor for HBV and HDV, and amino acids 157 to 165 of NTCP are critical for viral entry and likely limit viral infection of macaques. However, the molecular determinants for viral entry restriction in mouse NTCP (mNTCP) remain unclear. In this study, mNTCP was found to be unable to support either HBV or HDV infection, although it can bind to pre-S1 of HBV L protein and is functional in transporting substrate taurocholate; comprehensive swapping and point mutations of human NTCP (hNTCP) and mNTCP revealed molecular determinants restricting mNTCP for viral entry of HBV and HDV. Remarkably, when mNTCP residues 84 to 87 were substituted by human counterparts, mNTCP can effectively support viral infections. In addition, a number of cell lines, regardless of their species or tissue origin, supported HDV infection when transfected with hNTCP or mNTCP with residues 84 to 87 replaced by human counterparts, highlighting the central role of NTCP for viral infections mediated by HBV envelope proteins. These studies advance our understanding of NTCP-mediated viral entry of HBV and HDV and have important implications for developing the mouse model for their infections.
Project description:Human hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection and HBV-related diseases remain a major public health problem. Individuals coinfected with its satellite hepatitis D virus (HDV) have more severe disease. Cellular entry of both viruses is mediated by HBV envelope proteins. The pre-S1 domain of the large envelope protein is a key determinant for receptor(s) binding. However, the identity of the receptor(s) is unknown. Here, by using near zero distance photo-cross-linking and tandem affinity purification, we revealed that the receptor-binding region of pre-S1 specifically interacts with sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP), a multiple transmembrane transporter predominantly expressed in the liver. Silencing NTCP inhibited HBV and HDV infection, while exogenous NTCP expression rendered nonsusceptible hepatocarcinoma cells susceptible to these viral infections. Moreover, replacing amino acids 157-165 of nonfunctional monkey NTCP with the human counterpart conferred its ability in supporting both viral infections. Our results demonstrate that NTCP is a functional receptor for HBV and HDV.DOI:http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.00049.001.
Project description:Hepatitis D virus (HDV) is the smallest virus known to infect human. About 15 million people worldwide are infected by HDV among those 240 million infected by its helper hepatitis B virus (HBV). Viral hepatitis D is considered as one of the most severe forms of human viral hepatitis. No specific antivirals are currently available to treat HDV infection and antivirals against HBV do not ameliorate hepatitis D. Liver sodium taurocholate co-transporting polypeptide (NTCP) was recently identified as a common entry receptor for HDV and HBV in cell cultures. Here we show HDV can infect mice expressing human NTCP (hNTCP-Tg). Antibodies against critical regions of HBV envelope proteins blocked HDV infection in the hNTCP-Tg mice. The infection was acute yet HDV genome replication occurred efficiently, evident by the presence of antigenome RNA and edited RNA species specifying large delta antigen in the livers of infected mice. The resolution of HDV infection appears not dependent on adaptive immune response, but might be facilitated by innate immunity. Liver RNA-seq analyses of HDV infected hNTCP-Tg and type I interferon receptor 1 (IFN?/?R1) null hNTCP-Tg mice indicated that in addition to induction of type I IFN response, HDV infection was also associated with up-regulation of novel cellular genes that may modulate HDV infection. Our work has thus proved the concept that NTCP is a functional receptor for HDV infection in vivo and established a convenient small animal model for investigation of HDV pathogenesis and evaluation of antiviral therapeutics against the early steps of infection for this important human pathogen.
Project description:The sodium-taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP) is both a key bile acid (BA) transporter mediating uptake of BA into hepatocytes and an essential receptor for hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis D virus (HDV). In this study we aimed to characterize to what extent and through what mechanism BA affect HDV cell entry.HuH-7 cells stably expressing NTCP (HuH-7/NTCP) and primary human hepatocytes (PHH) were infected with in vitro generated HDV particles. Infectivity in the absence or presence of compounds was assessed using immunofluorescence staining for HDV antigen, standard 50% tissue culture infectious dose (TCID50) assays and quantitative PCR.Addition of primary conjugated and unconjugated BA resulted in a dose dependent reduction in the number of infected cells while secondary, tertiary and synthetic BA had a lesser effect. This effect was observed both in HuH-7/NTCP and in PHH. Other replication cycle steps such as replication and particle assembly and release were unaffected. Moreover, inhibitory BA competed with a fragment from the large HBV envelope protein for binding to NTCP-expressing cells. Conversely, the sodium/BA-cotransporter function of NTCP seemed not to be required for HDV infection since infection was similar in the presence or absence of a sodium gradient across the plasma membrane. When chenodeoxycolic acid (15 mg per kg body weight) was administered to three chronically HDV infected individuals over a period of up to 16 days there was no change in serum HDV RNA.Primary BA inhibit NTCP-mediated HDV entry into hepatocytes suggesting that modulation of the BA pool may affect HDV infection of hepatocytes.
Project description:The sodium taurocholate co-transporting polypeptide (NTCP, SLC10A1) is the main hepatic transporter of conjugated bile acids, and the entry receptor for hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis delta virus (HDV). Myrcludex B, a synthetic peptide mimicking the NTCP-binding domain of HBV, effectively blocks HBV and HDV infection. In addition, Myrcludex B inhibits NTCP-mediated bile acid uptake, suggesting that also other NTCP inhibitors could potentially be a novel treatment of HBV/HDV infection. This study aims to identify clinically-applied compounds intervening with NTCP-mediated bile acid transport and HBV/HDV infection. 1280 FDA/EMA-approved drugs were screened to identify compounds that reduce uptake of taurocholic acid and lower Myrcludex B-binding in U2OS cells stably expressing human NTCP. HBV/HDV viral entry inhibition was studied in HepaRG cells. The four most potent inhibitors of human NTCP were rosiglitazone (IC50 5.1?µM), zafirlukast (IC50 6.5?µM), TRIAC (IC50 6.9?µM), and sulfasalazine (IC50 9.6?µM). Chicago sky blue 6B (IC50 7.1?µM) inhibited both NTCP and ASBT, a distinct though related bile acid transporter. Rosiglitazone, zafirlukast, TRIAC, sulfasalazine, and chicago sky blue 6B reduced HBV/HDV infection in HepaRG cells in a dose-dependent manner. Five out of 1280 clinically approved drugs were identified that inhibit NTCP-mediated bile acid uptake and HBV/HDV infection in vitro.