In order to define neutralization regions on the envelope antigen of human T-cell leukemia virus type I (HTLV-I), we have generated a number of new anti-envelope gp46 monoclonal antibodies from rats and mice. Epitopes recognized by new monoclonal antibodies which could neutralize HTLV-I in syncytium and transformation inhibition assays were localized to sequences in gp46 from amino acids 186 to 193, 190 to 195, 191 to 195, 191 to 196, and 194 to 199. Ovalbumin-conjugated synthetic gp46 peptides containing these neutralization epitopes, pep190-199 (a synthetic gp46 peptide containing amino acids 190 to 199) and pep180-204, but not pep185-194 or pep194-203, could give rise to HTLV-I-neutralizing antibody responses in rabbits. These immune or nonimmune rabbits were then challenged with HTLV-I by intravenous inoculation with 5 x 107 live HTLV-I-producing ILT-8M2 cells. By a PCR assay, it was revealed that HTLV-I provirus was detected in peripheral blood lymphocytes from nonimmune and pep288-312-immunized rabbits, whereas the provirus was not detected in peripheral blood lymphocytes from pep190-199- and pep180-204-immunized rabbits over an extended period. These results suggest that the induction of anti-gp46 neutralizing antibody responses by immunization with synthetic peptides has the potential to protect animals against HTLV-I infection in vivo.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Insect Science