Update on SIV remission studies
Tab Ansari’s research at Emory/Yerkes on how an antibody treatment can push monkeys infected with SIV into remission was published in Science last year. At that time, Ansari told Lab Land about follow-up experiments to probe which immune cells are needed for this effect, which surprised many HIV/AIDS experts. Dr. Ansari is an IMP faculty member.
Ansari’s partner on the project, NIAID director Anthony Fauci, described the follow-up work in July at the International AIDS Society Conference in Paris. A summary can be found here.
For comparison, a study from IMP faculty member Guido Silvestri and colleagues at Yerkes published in 2016 found that treating SIV-infected monkeys with anti-CD8 antibodies, without stopping antiretroviral drugs, resulted in a rebound in virus levels. [They used ultrasensitive assays to detect the rebound.] However, the Yerkes team only used antibodies to the CD8 receptor alpha chain.
At Yerkes, IMP faculty member Mirko Paiardini is collaborating with the first author of the SIV remission Science paper, Siddappa Byrareddy, who is now at University of Nebraska. They are combining the anti-integrin antibody with IL21 treatment, which Paiardini’s group had found enhances intestinal immune reconstitution after the acute phase of SIV infection.