Moda F.,IRCC S Foundation Carlo Besta Neurological Institute |
Vimercati C.,IRCC S Foundation Carlo Besta Neurological Institute |
Campagnani I.,IRCC S Foundation Carlo Besta Neurological Institute |
Ruggerone M.,IRCC S Foundation Carlo Besta Neurological Institute |
And 8 more authors.
Prion diseases are caused by a conformational modification of the cellular prion protein (PrPC) into disease-specific forms, termed PrP Sc, that have the ability to interact with PrPC promoting its conversion to PrPSc. In vitro studies demonstrated that anti-PrP antibodies inhibit this process. In particular, the single chain variable fragment D18 antibody (scFvD18) showed high efficiency in curing chronically prion-infected cells. This molecule binds the PrPC region involved in the interaction with PrPSc thus halting further prion formation. These findings prompted us to test the efficiency of scFvD18 in vivo. A recombinant Adeno-Associated Viral vector serotype 9 was used to deliver scFvD18 to the brain of mice that were subsequently infected by intraperitoneal route with the mouse-adapted scrapie strain RML. We found that the treatment was safe, prolonged the incubation time of scrapie-infected animals and decreased the burden of total proteinase-resistant PrPSc in the brain, suggesting that scFvD18 interferes with prion replication in vivo. This approach is relevant for designing new therapeutic strategies for prion diseases and other disorders characterized by protein misfolding. © 2012 Landes Bioscience. Source