Basic Science Award

Identification of Anti-HIV Factor(s) from CD8+ Cell Antiviral Factor Gene Candidates

Award type
Award date
Award cycle
Award amount - Direct


CD8+ T cells play an important role in inhibiting HIV replication through a non-cytotoxic antiviral activity. This response is mediated by a soluble CD8+ T cell anti-HIV factor (CAF). Several studies have shown that all known anti-HIV factors lack identity with CAF. CAF appears to be a novel anti-HIV protein. A great effort has been given to evaluating the gene candidates associated with CAF identified by DNA microarray procedures. The list of potential genes was narrowed down to twenty-five. I have recently found that one of the twenty-five gene candidates consistently expresses a protein with anti-HIV activity in transfected HEK293 cells and primary human CD8+ T cells. This protein has broad and potent anti-HIV activity against all HIV isolates tested. The characteristics and effective dose (ED50) of this newly identified anti-HIV protein and its mechanism(s) of action will be determined. This anti-HIV protein has potential clinical application for the treatment of HIV-1 infected individuals. It might affect signaling pathways associated with HIV replication in CD4+ T cells. Thus, this research could help us uncover a novel antiviral network in CD4+ T cells. The result could shed light as well on how to induce and enhance the antiviral activity of CD8+ T cells.