Neutralizing activity and antibody reactivity toward immunogenic regions of the human T cell leukemia virus type I surface glycoprotein in sera of infected patients with different clinical states

J Infect Dis. 1997 Mar;175(3):716-9. doi: 10.1093/infdis/175.3.716.


The induction of specific neutralizing antibodies is an important part of vaccine strategy against human T cell leukemia virus type I (HTLV-I). A recently developed reporter gene induction assay was used to detect and quantify neutralizing antibodies in sera of HTLV-I-infected patients with different clinical states: Most sera (73/89) displayed an inhibitory activity. Neutralizing antibodies were more frequently detected in sera of patients with tropical spastic paraparesis/HTLV-associated myelopathy (TSP/HAM) or sicca syndrome (SS) (100%) than in sera of patients with adult T cell leukemia (ATL; 50%) or of asymptomatic carriers (AS; 83%). The mean titers in the different groups were significantly different (ATL < AS < TSP/HAM and SS). The antibody reactivity detected by the reporter gene inhibition assay was significantly related to the recognition of the neutralizable immunodominant domain (aa 175-199) of the surface envelope glycoprotein, indicating the importance of this region for potential vaccines.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Epitope Mapping
  • Gene Products, env / immunology*
  • HTLV-I Antibodies / immunology*
  • HTLV-I Antigens / immunology*
  • HTLV-I Infections / immunology*
  • Human T-lymphotropic virus 1 / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Leukemia, T-Cell / immunology
  • Neutralization Tests
  • Paraparesis, Tropical Spastic / immunology
  • Retroviridae Proteins, Oncogenic / immunology*
  • Sjogren's Syndrome / immunology


  • Gene Products, env
  • HTLV-I Antibodies
  • HTLV-I Antigens
  • Retroviridae Proteins, Oncogenic
  • gp46 protein, Human T-cell leukemia virus type I