Immunization with recombinant p17/p24:Ty virus-like particles in human immunodeficiency virus-infected persons.
Veenstra J., Williams IG., Colebunders R., Dorrell L., Tchamouroff SE., Patou G., Lange JM., Weller IV., Goeman J., Uthayakumar S., Gow IR., Weber JN., Coutinho RA.
In studies of the natural history of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection, it has been repeatedly shown that higher-titer antibody responses to the HIV gag p24 protein correlate with less rapid disease progression. In HIV-negative persons, immunization with HIV-1 p17/p24:Ty virus-like particles (p24-VLP) induced humoral and cellular immune responses to p24. This construct was therefore studied as a potential immunotherapeutic agent with the objective of augmenting the immune response to p24 in a double-blind placebo-controlled trial involving 74 p24 antibody-positive, asymptomatic HIV-1-infected subjects with CD4 cell counts > 350/mm3. Immunization with p24-VLP was generally well tolerated. Immunization with p24-VLP did not increase p24 antibody levels and had no effect on CD4 cell counts or virus load. The failure to increase p24 antibody titers cannot entirely be explained by the subjects' immunodeficiency because most generated an antibody response to Ty, a yeast component of the immunogen.