May 2004
Volume 45, Issue 13
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   May 2004
Peptides containing membrane–transiting motifs (MTPs) induce cellular resistance to virus infection
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • C.R. Brandt
    Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences,
    Medical Microbiology and Immunology,
    University of Wisconsin–Madison, Madison, WI
  • H. Bultmann
    Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences,
    University of Wisconsin–Madison, Madison, WI
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships  C.R. Brandt, Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation P; H. Bultmann, Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation P.
  • Footnotes
    Support  NIH NIAD P01 AI52049, NIH EY07336; Univ of WI Graduate School
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science May 2004, Vol.45, 2255. doi:
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      C.R. Brandt, H. Bultmann; Peptides containing membrane–transiting motifs (MTPs) induce cellular resistance to virus infection . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2004;45(13):2255.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract: : Purpose: We have previously shown that MTPs have antiviral properties, directly inactivating HSV–1 virions and also blocking virus entry into cells. The goal was to determine if these peptides could induce resistance to subsequent virus infection after rinsing cells to remove peptide. Methods: Vero and human foreskin fibroblast (HFF) cells were exposed to various active and control MTPs in culture and then tested for resistance to HSV–1 infection using entry assays. Results: Depending of the type of peptide or specific peptide modifications, resistance to HSV–1 infection was induced at low MTP concentrations (1–10 µM) within < 5 or ≤ 60 min, largely independent of temperature and cell type. MTPs consisting of, or including dextral amino acids, were particularly effective. The rapid induction of resistance persisted for several hours (up to 24) and could be re–induced by re–treatment. Depending on the peptide, resistance could be reversed by rinsing cells with 0.5 M NaCl prior to infection, suggesting that multiple mechanisms are involved. The MTPs did not simply compete for virus attachment to cell surfaces. Conclusions: These data add a third mechanism of action for the antiviral activity of these peptides. None of the currently known mechanisms of cellular immunity to virus infection, such as IFN induction, seem to account for the rapidity with which MTPs can protect cells. The results raise the possibility that these peptides could be used to prevent virus infection, which would make a significant impact on infection with various viruses.

Keywords: antiviral drugs • herpes simplex virus • keratitis 

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