Gustaf Ahlén

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BACKGROUND The hepatitis C virus (HCV) mutates within human leucocyte antigen (HLA) class I restricted immunodominant epitopes of the non-structural (NS) 3/4A protease to escape cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) recognition and promote viral persistence. However, variability is not unlimited, and sometimes almost absent, and factors that restrict viral(More)
We have recently shown that the NS3-based genetic immunogens should contain also hepatitis C virus (HCV) nonstructural (NS) 4A to utilize fully the immunogenicity of NS3. The next step was to try to enhance immunogenicity by modifying translation or mRNA synthesis. To enhance translation efficiency, a synthetic NS3/4A-based DNA (coNS3/4A-DNA) vaccine was(More)
A key question in the development of a therapeutic vaccine against hepatitis C virus (HCV) is whether vaccine-primed T cells enter the liver and eliminate HCV-expressing hepatocytes. In the absence of an infectious small-animal model, we evaluated liver homing of vaccine-primed T cells in mice with transient hepatic transgene expression of the HCV(More)
BACKGROUND Hepatitis C virus (HCV) effectively establishes persistent infection in human livers. The non-structural (NS) 3/4A complex participates in this process by cleavage of interferon beta (IFN beta) promoter stimulator-1 (IPS-1; also termed Cardif/MAVS/VISA), which inhibits responses to double stranded (ds) RNA. However, it is not known whether this(More)
UNLABELLED Tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα) has been implicated in a variety of inflammatory diseases, and anti-TNFα has been shown to improve therapy when added to standard of care in chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. In addition, patients with chronic HCV have increased serum levels of TNFα and the macrophage-attracting chemokine (C-C motif) ligand(More)
The role of hepatitis C virus (HCV) protein non-structural (NS) 5A in HCV-associated pathogenesis is still enigmatic. To investigate the in vivo role of NS5A for viral persistence and virus-associated pathogenesis a transgenic (Tg) mouse model was established. Mice with liver-targeted NS5A transgene expression were generated using the albumin promoter.(More)
BACKGROUND We explored the concept of heterologous prime/boost vaccination using 2 therapeutic vaccines currently in clinical development aimed at treating chronically infected hepatitis C virus (HCV) patients: prime with a DNA-based vaccine expressing HCV genotype 1a NS3/4A proteins (ChronVac-C) and boost with a modified vaccinia virus Ankara vaccine(More)
BACKGROUND The hepatitis C virus (HCV) establishes chronic infection by incompletely understood mechanisms. The non-structural (NS) 3/4A protease/helicase has been proposed as a key complex in modulating the infected hepatocyte, although nothing is known about the effects this complex exerts in vivo. AIM To generate mice with stable and transient(More)
Targeting antigens to antigen-presenting cells (APC) improve their immunogenicity and capacity to induce Th1 responses and cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL). We have generated a mucin-type immunoglobulin fusion protein (PSGL-1/mIgG(2b)), which upon expression in the yeast Pichia pastoris became multivalently substituted with O-linked oligomannose structures and(More)
Clearance of infections caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV) correlates with HCV-specific T cell function. We therefore evaluated therapeutic vaccination in 12 patients with chronic HCV infection. Eight patients also underwent a subsequent standard-of-care (SOC) therapy with pegylated interferon (IFN) and ribavirin. The phase I/IIa clinical trial was(More)