Stable expression of soluble therapeutic peptides in eukaryotic cells by multimerisation: Application to the HIV-1 fusion inhibitory peptide C46

Xavier Dervillez, Alexandra Hüther, Jochen Schuhmacher, Christian Griesinger, Jacques H. Cohen, Dorothee Von Laer, Ursula Dietrich*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A major drawback of therapeutic peptides is their short half-life, which results in the need for multiple applications and high synthesis costs. To overcome this, we established a eukaryotic expression system that allows the stable expression of small therapeutic peptides by multimerisation. By inserting the sequence encoding the therapeutic peptide between a signal peptide and the multimerising domain of the α-chain from the human C4bp plasma protein, therapeutic peptides as small as 5 kDa are secreted as multimers from transfected cells; this allows easy purification. As proof of principle, we show that the T20-derived HIV-1 fusion inhibitory peptide C46 in its multimeric form: i) was efficiently secreted, ii) was more stable than the current antiviral drug T20 in vitro and in vivo, and iii) inhibited HIV-1 entry with similar efficiency in vitro. Besides the gain in stability, multimerisation also leads to increased valency and allows the combination of several therapeutic functions. Furthermore, by expressing the multimers from cells, post-translational modifications could easily be introduced.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)330-339
Number of pages10
JournalChemMedChem
Volume1
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2006
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Gene expression
  • HIV-1
  • Multimerisation
  • Peptides
  • Viruses

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