Optimal combinations of broadly neutralizing antibodies for prevention and treatment of HIV-1 Clade C infection

Author Summary In recent years, a new generation of monoclonal antibodies has been isolated from HIV-1 infected individuals that exhibit broad and potent neutralizing activity when tested against diverse strains of virus. There is a high level of interest in the field in determining if these antibodies can be used to prevent or treat HIV-1 infection. Because HIV-1 is adept at escaping from immune recognition, it is generally thought that combinations of multiple antibodies targeting different sites will be required for efficacy, much the same as seen for conventional antiretroviral drugs. How many and which antibodies to include in such combinations is not known. In this study, a new mathematical model was developed and used to accurately predict various measures of neutralizing activity for all possible combinations having a total of 2, 3, or 4 of the most promising antibodies. Through a systematic and comprehensive comparison, we identified optimal combinations of antibodies that best complement one another for enhanced anti-viral activity, and therefore may be most effective for the prevention or treatment of HIV-1 infection. These results provide important parameters that inform the selection of antibodies to develop for clinical use.