An aptamer that neutralizes R5 strains of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 blocks gp120-CCR5 interaction.
Dey AK., Khati M., Tang M., Wyatt R., Lea SM., James W.
We recently described the isolation and structural characterization of 2'-fluoropyrimidine-substituted RNA aptamers that bind to gp120 of R5 strains of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 and thereby potently neutralize the infectivity of phylogenetically diverse R5 strains. Here we investigate the physical basis of their antiviral action. We show that both N-linked oligosaccharides and the variable loops V1/V2 and V3 are not required for binding of one aptamer, B40, to gp120. Using surface plasmon resonance binding analyses, we show that the aptamer binds to the CCR5-binding site on gp120 in a relatively CD4-independent manner, providing a mechanistic explanation for its neutralizing potency.