Antibody alone does not prevent experimental cytomegalovirus retinitis in mice with retrovirus-induced immunodeficiency (MAIDS).
Passive-transfer studies were performed to assess the ability of antibody alone to reduce the frequency and/or severity of necrotizing retinitis caused by murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV) in C57BL/6 mice with retrovirus-induced immunodeficiency syndrome (MAIDS). Initial experiments showed a gradual decline in the ability of mice to initiate humoral immunity during the evolution of MAIDS so that neither MCMV-specific IgM nor IgG could be detected during late-stage MAIDS. Passively administered hyperimmune MCMV immunoglobulin, however, could be detected within the serum of mice with MAIDS for at least 9 days after intraperitoneal injection and protected these animals in preliminary experiments from systemic MCMV disease and death when administered 24 h prior to intraperitoneal challenge with a lethal dose of virus. Nonetheless, passive transfer of hyperimmune MCMV serum to mice with MAIDS failed to reduce intraocular MCMV titers, frequency of retinitis, or severity of retinitis when administered 24 h prior to subretinal MCMV inoculation. Whereas whole eyes of MAIDS animals that received normal mouse serum and were injected subretinally with MCMV had an ocular MCMV titer of 4.3 log10 and a frequency of retinitis of 89% (severity score = 55%), whole eyes of antibody-treated mice with MAIDS had an ocular MCMV titer of 4.3 log10 and a frequency of retinitis of 87% (severity score = 57 %). Passive transfer of a neutralizing MCMV-specific monoclonal antibody also failed to reduce the frequency or severity of MCMV retinitis when administered to mice with MAIDS prior to subretinal MCMV inoculation. Our findings suggest that antibody immunotherapy alone will not be effective therapeutically for cytomegalovirus retinitis in patients with AIDS.
Dix, RD; Cray, C; Cousins, SW
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