Strain-specific neutralizing antibody responses against human cytomegalovirus envelope glycoprotein N

Academic Article


  • The human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) gM-gN complex is a major target of virus-neutralizing activity, and gN subtypes induce strain-specific antibodies. However, the biological significance of HCMV gN polymorphisms is not known. Neutralizing anti-body responses against HCMV gN recombinant viruses were investigated at study entry in 80 healthy HCMV-seropositive women who were monitored for the appearance of new antibody specificities against linear strain-specific epitopes on glycoproteins gH and gB as evidence of HCMV reinfection. Neutralizing activity against all four gN recombinant viruses was seen in 74% of subjects, and 61% of subjects had strain-specific responses. Significantly fewer women (9/39 subjects [23%]) with serological evidence of reinfection had strain-specific neutralizing responses than the women without reinfection (21/41 subjects [51%]). Women with antibodies against at least one of the four linear gB and gH antigens at study entry had higher neutralizing titers against gN-1 (P=0.006) and gN-2 (P=0.007). Neutralizing titers of≥400 against gN-3 (P=0.043) and gN-4 (P=0.049) at study entry were associated with longer times to serological evidence of reinfection. The findings demonstrate that HCMV gN elicits strain-specific neutralizing antibody responses and that broader anti-gN neutralizing activity may provide some protection from reinfection with a different virus strain. Copyright © 2012, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.
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    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Pati SK; Novak Z; Purser M; Arora N; Mach M; Britt WJ; Boppana SB
  • Start Page

  • 909
  • End Page

  • 913
  • Volume

  • 19
  • Issue

  • 6