Despite a resurgence of flavivirus infections worldwide, no approved therapeutic agent exists for any member of the genus. While cross-reactive antibodies with therapeutic potential against flaviviruses have been generated, the majority of them are anti-E antibodies with the potential to cause antibody-dependent enhancement of flavivirus infection and disease. We described previously mAbs against the non-structural NS1 protein of the West Nile virus (WNV) that were protective in mice when administered pre- or post-infection of WNV. Here, we demonstrate that one of these mAbs (16NS1) cross-reacted with Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) and exhibited protective activity against a lethal JEV infection. Overlapping peptide mapping analysis combined with site-specific mutations identified a novel epitope 116KAWGKSILFA 125 and critical amino acid residues ( 118W and 122I) for 16NS1 mAb binding. These results may facilitate the development of a broadly therapeutic mAb that lacks enhancing potential and/or subunit-based vaccine against flaviviruses that target the NS1 protein.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Journal of General Virology|
|State||Published - Jan 2012|