We have evaluated the potential of four synthetic peptides (denoted HH-2, 1002, 1006, 1018) with a distant relationship to the host defense peptide bovine bactenecin dodecapeptide for their ability to prevent genital infections with herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) in mice. All four peptides showed antiviral properties in vitro and reduced HSV-2 infection of Vero cells in a dose-dependent manner. Detailed analysis showed that the peptides were able to interfere with both viral attachment and entry, but not with replication post-entry, and were effective antivirals also when HSV-2 was introduced in human semen. Two of the peptides proved especially effective in reducing HSV-2 infection also in vivo. When admixed with virus prior to inoculation, both HH-2 and 1018 reduced viral replication and disease development in a genital model of HSV-2 infection in mice, and also when using very high infectious doses of HSV-2. These data show that peptides HH-2 and 1018 have antiviral properties and can be used to prevent genital herpes infection in mice. (C) 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Antiviral Research, 2013, Vol 100, Issue 2, p. 455-459