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Self-assembled or mixed peptide amphiphile micelles from Herpes simplex virus glycoproteins as potential immunomodulatory treatment

Authors Accardo A, Vitiello M, Tesauro D, Galdiero M, Finamore E, Martora F, Mansi R, Ringhieri P, Morelli G

Received 15 November 2013

Accepted for publication 15 January 2014

Published 7 May 2014 Volume 2014:9(1) Pages 2137—2148

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S57656

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Antonella Accardo,1 Mariateresa Vitiello,2,3 Diego Tesauro,1 Marilena Galdiero,2 Emiliana Finamore,2 Francesca Martora,2 Rosalba Mansi,1 Paola Ringhieri,1 Giancarlo Morelli1

1Department of Pharmacy, Interuniversitary Centre for Research on Bioactive peptides, CIRPeB, University of Naples "Federico II", Institute of Biostructures and Bioimaging IBB-CNR, Naples, Italy; 2Department of Experimental Medicine, Section of Microbiology and Clinical Microbiology, Second University of Naples, Naples, Italy; 3Department of Clinical Pathology and Transfusion Medicine, University Hospital “Ruggi d'Aragona”, Salerno, Italy

Abstract: The use of micelle aggregates formed from peptide amphiphiles (PAs) as potential synthetic self-adjuvant vaccines to treat Herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection are reported here. The PAs were based on epitopes gB409-505 and gD301-309, selected from HSV envelope glycoprotein B (gB) and glycoprotein D (gD), that had their N-terminus modified with hydrophobic moieties containing two C18 hydrocarbon chains. Pure and mixed micelles of gB and/or gD peptide epitopes were easily prepared after starting with the synthesis of corresponding PAs by solid phase methods. Structural characterization of the aggregates confirmed that they were sufficiently stable and compatible with in vivo use: critical micelle concentration values around 4.0 · 10-7 mol · Kg-1; hydrodynamic radii (RH) between 50–80 nm, and a zeta potential (ζ) around – 40 mV were found for all aggregates. The in vitro results indicate that both peptide epitopes and micelles, at 10 µM, triggered U937 and RAW 264.7 cells to release appreciable levels of cytokines. In particular, interleukin (IL)-23-, IL-6-, IL-8- or macrophage inflammatory protein (MIP)-2-, and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α-release increased considerably when cells were treated with the gB-micelles or gD-micelles compared with the production of the same cytokines when the stimulus was the single gB or gD peptide.

Keywords: epitopes, self-adjuvant vaccine, HSV

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