In an article published on Thursday (24) in the prestigious journal Science by the immunologist and pioneer in studies with monoclonal antibodies Dennis Burton succeeded in showing that the neutralizing antibody isolated from a patient infected with the HIV virus – called VRC01 – effective against infection of some strains of the virus.
Burton says that based on this research, it is possible to define the dosage of broad spectrum neutralizing antibodies required to block the HI virus from entering the body, although it has not shown effectiveness in real life.
For decades, doctors and science around the world have focused on finding preventive treatment for the HIV virus that causes AIDS. To date, research on vaccines that can protect the organism from the intruder has not achieved a satisfactory rate of effectiveness of over 50%.
Many of the difficulties stemmed from the fact that the mechanisms by which the immune system could prevent the virus from entering cells and causing infection are not fully understood.
Recently, the results of a study called AMP were published that looked at the use of broad spectrum neutralizing antibodies (or bnAb in English) in around 3,000 men who are considered the group at highest risk of HIV exposure (transsexual and homosexual populations) . in the USA, South Africa and Europe.
The trial failed because the numbers of infected people were the same in the control group (who received placebo) and the treated group (who received two doses of treatment for eight weeks), but although the treatment had not been proven to be effective, AMP brought important benefits. Milestones in HIV research.
Adapted to circulating virus strains, however, the new discovery represents a new phase in research into so-called HIV protective correlates and could play an important role in the search for new pre-exposure prophylactic treatments (known by the acronym PrEP and now consisting of antiviral drugs) and vaccines .