Use of broadly neutralizing antibodies for HIV-1 prevention

Amarendra Pegu, Ann J. Hessell, John R. Mascola, Nancy L. Haigwood

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    106 Scopus citations


    Antibodies have a long history in antiviral therapy, but until recently, they have not been actively pursued for HIV-1 due to modest potency and breadth of early human monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) and perceived insurmountable technical, financial, and logistical hurdles. Recent advances in the identification and characterization of MAbs with the ability to potently neutralize diverse HIV-1 isolates have reinvigorated discussion and testing of these products in humans, since new broadly neutralizing MAbs (bnMAbs) are more likely to be effective against worldwide strains of HIV-1. In animal models, there is abundant evidence that bnMAbs can block infection in a dose-dependent manner, and the more potent bnMAbs will allow clinical testing at infusion doses that are practically achievable. Moreover, recent advances in antibody engineering are providing further improvements in MAb potency, breadth, and half-life. This review summarizes the current state of the field of bnMAb protection in animal models as well as a review of variables that are critical for antiviral activity. Several bnMAbs are currently in clinical testing, and we offer perspectives on their use as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), potential benefits beyond sterilizing immunity, and a discussion of future approaches to engineer novel molecules.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)296-312
    Number of pages17
    JournalImmunological reviews
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2017


    • Fc-effector functions
    • HIV-1 antibodies
    • Neutralizing antibodies
    • SHIV protection
    • pre-exposure prophylaxis

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Immunology and Allergy
    • Immunology


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