Saturday, March 27, 2010

Can Silver Nanoparticles Stop AIDS Infections?

Can Silver Nanoparticles Stop AIDS Infections?

Excerpts From New Study Published in the Journal of Nanobiotechnology: Silver Nanoparticles “Exert Anti-HIV Activity At An Early Stage of Viral Replication”

The following text are brief excepts from a brand new study published in the prestigious Journal of Nanobiotechnology (published online January 20, 2010), in which it was demonstrated that “HIV infectivity is effectively eliminated following short exposure of isolated virus to silver nanoparticles.

In other words, the study demonstrates that silver nanoparticles can be used to stop the AIDS virus from infecting human cells.

What’s more, according to the study, silver nanoparticles inhibit HIV infection at concentrations that do not cause harm to human cells. And according to the study conclusions, drug-resistant strains of HIV are apparently just as vulnerable to the silver nanoparticles as non-drug resistant strains!

At the web site, I discussed an astonishing 2005 clinical study which was published in the very same journal, which also demonstrated the ability of silver nanoparticles to inhibit HIV replication.

This new study made has allowed researchers to gain several additional important insights into the mechanism underlying the HIV-inhibitory activity of silver nanoparticles. It is almost inevitable that this new information will serve as a basis for further research into using silver nanoparticles to stop AIDS infections.

Study Excerpts:

Here are some pertinent excerpts from this remarkable new study:

“Silver nanoparticles proved to be an antiviral agent against HIV-1, but its mode of action was not fully elucidated.

Is gp120 its principal target? Do silver nanoparticles act as entry inhibitors?

In this study, we investigated the mode of antiviral action of silver nanoparticles against HIV-1. Our results reveal, for the first time, that silver nanoparticles exert anti-HIV activity at an early stage of viral replication, most likely as a virucidal agent or viral entry inhibitor.

No significant difference was found in the antiviral activities of silver nanoparticles against the different drug-resistant strains (Table 1), so the mutations in antiretroviral HIV strains that confer resistance do not affect the efficacy of silver nanoparticles.

These results further agree with previous findings, where it was proven that silver nanoparticles are broad-spectrum biocides [30,31]

HIV-1 strains found in the human population can differ widely in their pathogenicity, virulence, and sensitivity to particular antiretroviral drugs [32]

The fact that silver nanoparticles inhibit such a varied panel of strains makes them an effective broad-spectrum agent against HIV-1. This particular property can reduce the likelihood of the emergence of resistance and the subsequent spread of infection.

… Silver nanoparticles proved to be virucidal to cell-free and cell-associated HIV-1 as judged by viral infectivity assays (Figures ​(Figures33 and ​and4).4).

HIV infectivity is effectively eliminated following short exposure of isolated virus to silver nanoparticles. Silver nanoparticle treatment of chronically infected H9+ cells as well as human PBMC+ resulted in decreased infectivity.

… Silver nanoparticles act directly on the virus at steps that prevent integration inside the host cell, but further pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamic, and toxicological studies in animal models are needed to define safety parameters for the use of silver nanoparticles as preventive tools for HIV-1 transmission.

…Finally, we propose that the antiviral activity of silver nanoparticles results from their inhibition of the interaction between gp120 and the target cell membrane receptors. According to our results, this mode of antiviral action allows silver nanoparticles to inhibit HIV-1 infection regardless of viral tropism or resistance profile, to bind to gp120 in a manner that prevents CD4-dependent virion binding, fusion, and infectivity, and to block HIV-1 cell-free and cell-associated infection, acting as a virucidal agent.

In conclusion, silver nanoparticles are effective virucides as they inactivate HIV particles in a short period of time, exerting their activity at an early stage of viral replication (entry or fusion) and at post-entry stages. The data presented here contribute to a new and still largely unexplored area; the use of nanomaterials against specific targets of viral particles.

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