Los Alamos National Laboratory

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Clues to creating an HIV vaccine: HIV sugars are key for effective immune responses

Recent work at Los Alamos sheds light on the mechanisms that lead to broader immune responses in HIV infected individuals and will help inform future vaccine designs.

Artistic rendition of antibodies targeting "gaps" in the HIV virus's sugar shield.

Artistic rendition of antibodies targeting "gaps" in the HIV virus's sugar shield. Blue protein is antibody, and the HIV surface protein called Env is depicted using the predicted sugar shield -- dark blue are sites where sugars are attached, green is the predicted sugar shield, and magenta/pink are uncommon gaps in the sugar shield. Study author Kshitij Wagh et al. show that the completeness of sugar shield of the infecting virus is key to developing effective antibody responses in HIV infected individuals.