Volume 3.26 | Jul 15

Immunology of Infectious Disease News 3.26 July 15, 2015
Immunology of Infectious Disease News
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Isolation and Characterization of Broad and Ultrapotent Human Monoclonal Antibodies with Therapeutic Activity against Chikungunya Virus
Investigators isolated and characterized human monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) that neutralize chikungunya virus infectivity. Among the 30 mAbs isolated, 13 had broad and ultrapotent neutralizing activity, and all of these mapped to domain A of the E2 envelope protein. [Cell Host Microbe]
Abstract | Graphical Abstract | Press Release | Video
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PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)
Characterization of Liver Pathogenesis, Human Immune Responses and Drug Testing in a Humanized Mouse Model of HCV Infection
Researchers demonstrated that a humanized mouse is capable of supporting HCV infection and can present some of the clinical symptoms found in HCV-infected patients including hepatitis, robust virus-specific human immune cell and cytokine responses as well as liver fibrosis and cirrhosis. [Gut] Full Article

Innate Immune Defenses Mediated by Two ILC Subsets Are Critical for Protection against Acute Clostridium difficile Infection
To identify immune pathways that mediate recovery from C. difficile infection, scientists challenged C57BL/6, Rag1−/− (which lack T and B cells), and Rag2−/− Il2rg−/− mice (which additionally lack innate lymphoid cells [ILCs]) with C. difficile. [Cell Host Microbe] Abstract | Graphical Abstract

Long Noncoding RNA Derived from CD244 Signaling Epigenetically Controls CD8+ T-Cell Immune Responses in Tuberculosis Infection
Investigators showed that active human tuberculosis infection up-regulates CD244 and CD244 signaling-associated molecules in CD8+ T cells and that blockade of CD244 signaling enhances production of IFN-γ and TNF-α. [Proc Natl Acad Sci USA] Abstract

IFNγ and IL-12 Restrict Th2 Responses during Helminth/Plasmodium Co-Infection and Promote IFNγ from Th2 Cells
Researchers observed reduced anti-helminth Th2 cell responses and compromised anti-helminth immunity during Heligmosomoides polygyrus and Plasmodium chabaudi co-infection. [PLoS Pathog] Full Article

Circulating Human CD27IgA+ Memory B Cells Recognize Bacteria with Polyreactive Igs
The vast majority of IgA production occurs in mucosal tissue following T cell–dependent and T cell–independent Ag responses. To study the nature of each of these responses, investigators analyzed the gene-expression and Ig-reactivity profiles of T cell–dependent CD27+IgA+ and T cell–independent CD27IgA+ circulating memory B cells. [J Immunol] Abstract

Litomosoides Sigmodontis Induces TGF-β Receptor Responsive, IL-10-Producing T Cells that Suppress Bystander T-Cell Proliferation in Mice
Helminth parasites suppress immune responses to prolong their survival within the mammalian host. Thereby not only helminth-specific but also non-helminth-specific bystander immune responses are suppressed. Investigators use the murine model of Litomosoides sigmodontis infection to elucidate the underlying mechanisms leading to this bystander T-cell suppression. [Eur J Immunol] Abstract


The Tat Inhibitor Didehydro-Cortistatin A Prevents HIV-1 Reactivation from Latency
Scientists showed that the Tat inhibitor didehydro-cortistatin A, unlike other antiretrovirals, reduces residual levels of viral transcription in several models of HIV latency, breaks the Tat-mediated transcriptional feedback loop, and establishes a nearly permanent state of latency, which greatly diminishes the capacity for virus reactivation. [mBio] Full Article | Press Release

Loss of Marginal Zone B-Cells in SHIVSF162P4 Challenged Rhesus Macaques Despite Control of Viremia to Low or Undetectable Levels in Chronic Infection
Investigators characterized rhesus macaque marginal zone (MZ) B cells, present in secondary lymphoid tissue but not peripheral blood, as CD19+, CD20+, CD21hi, IgM+, CD22+, CD38+, BTLA+, CD40+, CCR6+ and BCL-2+. Compared to healthy macaques, SHIVSF162P4-infected animals showed decreased total B cells and MZ B cells and increased MZ B cell Ki-67 expression early in chronic infection. [Virology] Abstract

Immunologic and Virologic Progression in HIV Controllers: The Role of Viral “Blips” and Immune Activation in the ANRS CO21 CODEX Study
Researchers investigated the rate of immunologic and/or virologic progression and its determinants in the ANRS CO21/CODEX cohort. Immunologic progression was defined as a lasting fall in CD4+ T cell count below 350/mm3 or more than 200/mm3 with a baseline count below 600/mm3. [PLoS One] Full Article

Discovery of Genetic Variants of the Kinases that Activate Tenofovir in a Compartment-Specific Manner
Tenofovir (TFV) is used in combination with other antiretroviral drugs for human immunodeficiency virus treatment and prevention. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells, vaginal, and colorectal tissues were transfected with siRNA targeting nucleotide kinases, incubated with TFV, and TFV-monophosphate and TFV-diphosphate were measured using mass spectrometry–liquid chromatography. [EBioMedicine] Full Article | Press Release

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Neutrophils in Viral Infections: Current Concepts and Caveats
The authors discuss the current understanding of the complex role of neutrophil immunity in viral infections and disease pathogenesis and the potential mechanisms identified to date. [J Leukoc Biol] Abstract

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Immunovaccine and PharmAthene Sign Exclusive Worldwide License Agreement to Develop and Commercialize an Anthrax Vaccine Formulated in DepoVax™
Immunovaccine Inc. announced that it has entered into an exclusive worldwide license agreement with PharmAthene, Inc. to develop and commercialize a Recombinant Protective Antigen Anthrax vaccine candidate utilizing Immunovaccine’s proprietary DepoVax™ vaccine platform. [Immunovaccine Inc.] Press Release

UTHealth Researcher Awarded $1.9 Million Grant to Study C. diff Infections
Charles Darkoh, Ph.D., a researcher at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) School of Public Health, was recently awarded a five-year, $1.9 million R01 grant by The National Institutes of Health to develop a non-antibiotic treatment for Clostridium difficile infections. [The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston] Press Release

Vanderbilt University Medical Center Joins Human Vaccines Project as First Scientific Hub
Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC), the Human Vaccines Project and the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative are pleased to announce that VUMC has become the Project’s first scientific hub. [International AIDS Vaccine Initiative] Press Release

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NEW Infection Prevention Society 6th Annual Conference 2015 (IPS 2015)
September 28-30, 2015
Liverpool, United Kingdom

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NEW Research Assistant – Immunotherapy for HIV Infection (California Institute of Technology)

NEW Research Assistant – Molecular Immunology of HIV (University of Oxford)

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Scientific Marketing Specialist – Immunology (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)

Postdoctoral Position – Translational Immunology (University of Utah School of Medicine)

PhD Studentship – Veterinary and Animal Sciences (University of Milan)

Faculty Position – HIV Research (University of Pittsburgh)

Faculty Positions – Immunology/Infectious Disease (The Wistar Institute)

Postdoctoral Scientist – HIV Immunology (Gilead Sciences)

PhD Position – Microbial Immunology (Hans Knöll Institute)

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