Product(s) used in this publication: PepStar™ Peptide Microarrays
Immunization of different species including goats, rats, hamsters and guinea pigs with the recombinant ectodomain of the transmembrane envelope (TM) protein p15E of porcine endogenous retrovirus (PERV) has been shown to result in the production of virus-neutralizing antibodies. The sera recognize two groups of epitopes, one located in the fusion peptide-proximal region (FPPR) and the second in the membrane-proximal external region (MPER) of p15E. Most interestingly, the epitopes in the MPER are similar to epitopes in the TM protein gp41 of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) recognized by mAbs 2F5 and 4E10, which broadly neutralize HIV-1. To study which epitope and which antibody population are involved in the process of neutralization of PERV, this study generated a new antiserum in a goat using an elongated ectodomain of p15E. The immune serum neutralized PERV at a higher titre and recognized broader epitopes in the FPPR and MPER of p15E. For the first time, antibody subpopulations were isolated from this serum using affinity chromatography with immobilized proteins and peptides corresponding to the FPPR and MPER of p15E. Only the affinity-purified antibodies specifically binding the MPER neutralized PERV, indicating that, as in the case of HIV-1, the MPER is an important target of neutralizing activity.