Delivery platforms for broadly neutralizing antibodies

Curr Opin HIV AIDS. 2023 Jul 1;18(4):191-208. doi: 10.1097/COH.0000000000000803. Epub 2023 May 15.


Purpose of review: Passive administration of broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) is being evaluated as a therapeutic approach to prevent or treat HIV infections. However, a number of challenges face the widespread implementation of passive transfer for HIV. To reduce the need of recurrent administrations of bNAbs, gene-based delivery approaches have been developed which overcome the limitations of passive transfer.

Recent findings: The use of DNA and mRNA for the delivery of bNAbs has made significant progress. DNA-encoded monoclonal antibodies (DMAbs) have shown great promise in animal models of disease and the underlying DNA-based technology is now being tested in vaccine trials for a variety of indications. The COVID-19 pandemic greatly accelerated the development of mRNA-based technology to induce protective immunity. These advances are now being successfully applied to the delivery of monoclonal antibodies using mRNA in animal models. Delivery of bNAbs using viral vectors, primarily adeno-associated virus (AAV), has shown great promise in preclinical animal models and more recently in human studies. Most recently, advances in genome editing techniques have led to engineering of monoclonal antibody expression from B cells. These efforts aim to turn B cells into a source of evolving antibodies that can improve through repeated exposure to the respective antigen.

Summary: The use of these different platforms for antibody delivery has been demonstrated across a wide range of animal models and disease indications, including HIV. Although each approach has unique strengths and weaknesses, additional advances in efficiency of gene delivery and reduced immunogenicity will be necessary to drive widespread implementation of these technologies. Considering the mounting clinical evidence of the potential of bNAbs for HIV treatment and prevention, overcoming the remaining technical challenges for gene-based bNAb delivery represents a relatively straightforward path towards practical interventions against HIV infection.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / genetics
  • Antibodies, Neutralizing
  • Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies
  • COVID-19* / therapy
  • HIV Antibodies
  • HIV Infections* / prevention & control
  • HIV-1* / genetics
  • Humans
  • Pandemics


  • Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies
  • HIV Antibodies
  • Antibodies, Neutralizing
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal