Tat toxoid as a component of a preventive vaccine in seronegative subjects

Alessandro Gringeri, Elena Santagostino, Myrvet Muça-Perja, Helene Le Buanec, Bernard Bizzini, Abderrhaim Lachgar, Jean Francois Zagury, Jay Rappaport, Arsene Burny, Robert C. Gallo, Daniel Zagury

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Because administration of Tat protein, the HIV-1 toxin that induces immunosuppression and apoptosis, may be deleterious to the host immune system, a chemically inactivated but nonetheless immunogenic Tat preparation, Tat toxoid, was used to immunize seronegative individuals against Tat. In an open, controlled, phase I clinical trial, Tat toxoid turned out to be safe, well tolerated, and able tO trigger a specific immune reaction. In particular, a threefold to more than 10-fold increase of circulating antibodies directed against the native Tat was observed after immunization in all of 5 immunized study subjects, together with a positive reaction to delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) skin test with Tat toxoid in vivo and increased lymphoproliferative response to native Tat in vitro. Persistent (≥ year) high levels of circulating anti-Tat antibodies could prevent the Tat- induced immune suppression and, following HIV-1 exposure, allow the anti- HIV-1 cellular immune response, with its early release of protective β- chemokines, to occur leading to an increase of host resistance, that is, protection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)371-375
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes and Human Retrovirology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 1999


  • AIDS vaccine
  • HIV-1-induced immunosuppression
  • Tat toxin
  • Tat toxoid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Virology


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