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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14(9), 19109-19127; doi:10.3390/ijms140919109

Single-Chain Fragment Variable Passive Immunotherapies for Neurodegenerative Diseases

1
Department of Neuroscience, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC 20057, USA
2
Department of Neurology, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC 20057, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 August 2013 / Revised: 29 August 2013 / Accepted: 30 August 2013 / Published: 17 September 2013
(This article belongs to the collection Protein Folding)
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Abstract

Accumulation of misfolded proteins has been implicated in a variety of neurodegenerative diseases including prion diseases, Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD), and Huntington’s disease (HD). In the past decade, single-chain fragment variable (scFv) -based immunotherapies have been developed to target abnormal proteins or various forms of protein aggregates including Aβ, SNCA, Htt, and PrP proteins. The scFvs are produced by fusing the variable regions of the antibody heavy and light chains, creating a much smaller protein with unaltered specificity. Because of its small size and relative ease of production, scFvs are promising diagnostic and therapeutic reagents for protein misfolded diseases. Studies have demonstrated the efficacy and safety of scFvs in preventing amyloid protein aggregation in preclinical models. Herein, we discuss recent developments of these immunotherapeutics. We review efforts of our group and others using scFv in neurodegenerative disease models. We illustrate the advantages of scFvs, including engineering to enhance misfolded conformer specificity and subcellular targeting to optimize therapeutic action.
Keywords: scFv; immunotherapy; Prion disease; Alzheimer’s disease; Parkinson’s disease; Huntington’s disease; PrP; Aβ; SNCA; Htt scFv; immunotherapy; Prion disease; Alzheimer’s disease; Parkinson’s disease; Huntington’s disease; PrP; ; SNCA; Htt
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Huang, L.; Su, X.; Federoff, H.J. Single-Chain Fragment Variable Passive Immunotherapies for Neurodegenerative Diseases. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14, 19109-19127.

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