Cell derived liposomes expressing CCR5 as a new targeted drug-delivery system for HIV infected cells

Tomer Bronshtein, Naama Toledano, Dganit Danino, Shimon Pollack, Marcelle MacHluf*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Anti-retroviral-therapies against HIV/AIDS focus on inhibiting viral growth and may slow AIDS progression, but not cure the disease. Here we describe an approach to treat HIV as a cellular pathology by targeting cell derived liposomes against HIV-infected cells. Cell-derived-liposomes were prepared from the cytoplasmatic membranes of cells expressing CCR5, the human receptor for gp120, that is found on the surface of virions and HIV-infected cells. The specific targeting and cytotoxicity of the cell-derived liposomes towards gp120-expressing cells were studied. Cell-derived liposomes exhibited unilamellar morphology and were found to be of 100-200 nm in diameter. Moreover, CCR5 that was expressed on the surface of the cell-derived liposomes was biologically active and correctly oriented. Cell-derived liposomes incubated with HIV-infected model cells exhibited significant and specific targeting to those gp120-expressing cells. To demonstrate the system efficacy, EDTA was selected as liposomal encapsulate and was shown to cause high cytotoxic effect when introduced into the cell cytoplasm. Finally, cell-derived liposomes containing EDTA led to a 60% reduction in the viability of gp120-expressing cells compared to no effect on control cells that do not express gp120. These results demonstrate the specific targeting and cytotoxic effect of CCR5-conjugated cell-derived liposomes towards gp120-expressing HIV model cells, suggesting for a potential new therapeutic approach.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-148
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Controlled Release
Issue number2
StatePublished - 30 Apr 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • AIDS
  • CCR5
  • Cell-derived
  • EDTA
  • HIV
  • Liposome


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