Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

AAV-HDV an Attractive Platform for the In Vivo Study of HDV Biology and Mechanism of Disease Pathogenesis

Version 1 : Received: 15 March 2021 / Approved: 16 March 2021 / Online: 16 March 2021 (10:14:06 CET)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Maestro, S.; Gómez-Echarte, N.; Camps, G.; Usai, C.; Suárez, L.; Vales, Á.; Olagüe, C.; Aldabe, R.; González-Aseguinolaza, G. AAV-HDV: An Attractive Platform for the In Vivo Study of HDV Biology and the Mechanism of Disease Pathogenesis. Viruses 2021, 13, 788. Maestro, S.; Gómez-Echarte, N.; Camps, G.; Usai, C.; Suárez, L.; Vales, Á.; Olagüe, C.; Aldabe, R.; González-Aseguinolaza, G. AAV-HDV: An Attractive Platform for the In Vivo Study of HDV Biology and the Mechanism of Disease Pathogenesis. Viruses 2021, 13, 788.

Journal reference: Viruses 2021, 13, 788
DOI: 10.3390/v13050788

Abstract

Hepatitis delta virus (HDV) infection causes the most severe form of viral hepatitis but little is known about the molecular mechanisms involved. The recently developed HDV mouse model based on the delivery of HDV replication-competent genomes using adeno-associated vectors (AAV) develop a liver pathology very similar to the human disease, and allowed us to perform mechanistic studies. We have generated different AAV-HDV mutants to eliminate the expression HDV antigens (HDAgs), characterized them both in vitro and in vivo. We confirmed that S-HDAg is essential for HDV replication and cannot be replaced by L-HDAg or host cellular proteins, and the L-HDAg is essential for HDV infectious particle production. We have also found that the lack of L-HDAg resulted in the increase of of S-HDAg expression levels and the exacerbation of liver damage which is T cell independent but is associated with an increment in liver inflammation. Interestingly, early expression of L-HDAg significantly ameliorated the liver damage induced by the mutant expressing only the S-HDAg. In summary, the use of AAV-HDV represents a very attractive platform to interrogate in vivo the role of viral components in the HDV life cycle and to better understand the mechanism of HDV-induced liver pathology.

Keywords

HDV; mouse model; AAV; HDAg; Liver damage

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