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Structure of RSV Fusion Glycoprotein Trimer Bound to a Prefusion-Specific Neutralizing Antibody

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Science  25 Apr 2013:
1234914
DOI: 10.1126/science.1234914

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Abstract

The respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) fusion (F) glycoprotein prefusion conformation is the target of most RSV-neutralizing activity in human sera, but its metastability has hindered characterization. To overcome this obstacle, we identified prefusion-specific antibodies which were substantially more potent than the prophylactic antibody palivizumab. The co-crystal structure for one of these antibodies, D25, in complex with the F glycoprotein revealed that D25 locks F in its prefusion state by binding to a quaternary epitope at the trimer apex. Electron microscopy showed that two other antibodies, AM22 and 5C4, also bind to the newly identified site of vulnerability, which we named antigenic site Ø. These studies should enable design of improved vaccine antigens and guide new approaches for passive prevention of RSV-induced disease.

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