Antibodies for prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV-1.
Although antiretroviral (ARV) prophylaxis can reduce mother-to-child transmission (MTCT) of HIV-1 to less than 2%, one-quarter of a million infants continue to be infected with HIV-1 annually. ARV prophylaxis alone will fail to eliminate infant HIV-1 infection because of issues of maternal adherence, toxicities, ARV-resistant virus strains, and acute maternal infection. Effective maternal and/or infant immunization will likely be required to achieve the goal of an HIV-free generation.This article describes recent studies of antibody responses that protect against vertical HIV-1 transmission. Studies have shown that maternal neutralization breadth is not a critical factor in MTCT, yet the ability of maternal plasma to neutralize autologous virus variants may be important in infant protection. There is also new evidence that infants mount robust and durable antibody responses to HIV-1 envelope following vaccination and can develop broad neutralization during infection. Finally, passive immunization of infants with highly potent and broad neutralizing antibodies may be an effective strategy to protect infants against infection with postnatally transmitted variants.Defining the characteristics of maternal and infant antibody responses that protect against MTCT will inform development of effective passive and active immunization strategies that will likely be required to eliminate pediatric HIV-1.
Fouda, GG; Moody, MA; Permar, SR
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