Tat-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes select for SIV escape variants during resolution of primary vimamia

Todd M. Allen, David H. O'Connor, Peicheng Jing, John L. Dzuris, Bianca R. Mothé, Thorsten U. Vogel, Ed Dunphy, Max E. Liebl, Carol Emerson, Nancy Wilson, Kevin J. Kunstman, Xiaochi Wang, David B. Allison, Austin L. Hughes, Ronald C. Desrosiers, John D. Altman, Steven M. Wollnsky, Alessandro Sette, David I. Watkins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

630 Scopus citations

Abstract

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) infections are characterized by early peaks of viraemia that decline as strong cellular immune responses develop1,2. Although it has been shown that virus-specific CD8-positive cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) exert selective pressure during HIV and SIV infection3-11, the data have been controversial12,13. Here we show that Tat-specific CD8-positive T-lymphocyte responses select for new viral escape variants during the acute phase of infection. We sequenced the entire virus immediately after the acute phase, and found that amino-acid replacements accumulated primarily in Tat CTL epitopes. This implies that Tat-specific CTLs may be significantly involved in controlling wild-type virus replication, and suggests that responses against viral proteins that are expressed early during the viral life cycle might be attractive targets for HIV vaccine development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)386-390
Number of pages5
JournalNature
Volume407
Issue number6802
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 21 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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