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The hepatitis C virus (HCV) protease and helicase encompasses the nonstructural (NS) 3 protein and the cofactor NS4A, which targets the NS3/4A-complex to intracellular membranes. We here evaluate the importance of NS4A in NS3-based genetic immunogens. A full-length genotype 1 NS3/4A gene was cloned into a eucaryotic expression vector in the form of NS3/4A(More)
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)
The nucleocapsid of the hepatitis B virus (HBV) is composed of 180 to 240 copies of the HBV core (HBc) protein. HBc antigen (HBcAg) capsids are extremely immunogenic and can activate naive B cells by cross-linking their surface receptors. The molecular basis for the interaction between HBcAg and naive B cells is not known. The functionality of this(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)
Complement-dependent cytotoxicity or flow cytometric lymphocyte crossmatch (LXM) tests may fail to detect clinically significant antibodies (Abs) against non-human leukocyte antigen (HLA). A flow cytometric endothelial precursor cell crossmatch (EPCXM) test (XM-ONE) is available for detection of Abs against donor endothelial precursor cells (EPCs). We(More)
Hepatitis B virus (HBV) core antigen (HBcAg) has extraordinary immunostimulatory properties. The majority of studies done so far on HBcAg induced responses have used ELISA or bioassay for cytokine determination and the 3[H]thymidine incorporation assay to measure proliferation. Here multiparameter flow cytometry was used to measure HBcAg induced cytokine(More)
The hepatitis B virus (HBV) core antigen (HBcAg) has a unique ability to bind a high frequency of naive human and murine B cells. The role of HBcAg-binding naive B cells in the immunogenicity of HBcAg is not clear. The HBcAg-binding properties of naive B cells were characterized using HBcAg particles with mutated spike region (residues 76-85) sequences.(More)
We have investigated the ability of hepatitis C virus non-structural (NS) 3/4A-DNA-based vaccines to activate long-term cell-mediated immune responses in mice. Wild-type and synthetic codon optimized (co) NS3/4A DNA vaccines have previously been shown to be immunogenic in mice, rabbits and humans, although we have very poor knowledge about the longevity of(More)
The presence of human leukocyte antigen (HLA) and non-HLA antibodies (Abs) in kidney transplant recipients is associated with graft rejections. This study reports the results of an endothelial precursor cell crossmatch (EPCXM) test for detection of non-HLA Abs and its correlation to lymphocyte crossmatch (LXM) test results, the degree and type of(More)