Molecular characterization of five human anti-human immunodeficiency virus type 1 antibody heavy chains reveals extensive somatic mutation typical of an antigen-driven immune response

Jennifer S. Andris, Syd Johnson, Susan Zolla-Pazner, J. Donald Capra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations

Abstract

We report the heavy chain variable region sequences from the cDNAs of five previously described monoclonal cell lines producing human antibodies specific for the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 and detail the molecular characteristics, germ-line origins, and extent of somatic mutation among these antibodies. Three of the five heavy chain variable regions derive from the VHIV gene family, but each has arisen from a different heavy chain variable region (VH) gene segment within the VHIV family. In addition, one is derived from a VHI gene segment, and one is derived from a VHV gene segment. Since four of the five antibodies arise from known germ-line VH elements, a precise determination of the extent of somatic variation is possible. The amount of variation from the closest germ-line sequence ranges from 4.5% to 14.8% among these antibodies, most of which is concentrated in the complementarity-determining regions. In general, the diversity (D) segments are long, characteristic of D-D fusions and/or extensive terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase activity; however, definitive homologies cannot be found with the known germ-line D segments. Joining (JH) gene segment utilization appears random. The use of five different germ-line VH gene segments and extensive somatic mutation provides evidence that a polyclonal, antigen-driven immune response occurs during the natural infection with human immunodeficiency virus.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7783-7787
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Volume88
Issue number17
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • B-cell repertoire
  • Human antibodies
  • Variable region gene segments

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