Functional stability of 3D8 scFv, a nucleic acid-hydrolyzing single chain antibody, under different biochemical and physical conditions

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3D8 single-chain Fv (scFv) is a catalytic nucleic acid antibody with anti-viral activity against a broad spectrum of viruses. Here we investigated the functional stability of 3D8 scFv to provide a basis for engineering a 3D8 scFv derivative and for developing stable formulations with improved stability and potential use as an anti-viral agent. The stability of 3D8 scFv was assessed by measuring its DNA-hydrolyzing activity under different biochemical and physical conditions using a fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based method. In addition, the anti-influenza (H9N2) effect of 3D8 scFv was evaluated in A549 cells. 3D8 scFv was stable at 50 °C for 6 h at pH 7.2, for 3 days at pH 4–10 at 37 °C and 30 days at pH 4–8 at 37 °C. The stability was not affected by a reducing condition, freeze–thawing for up to 30 cycles, or lyophilization. Evaluation of the anti-virus effect showed that cells treated with 32–128 units of 3D8 scFv showed a 50% decrease in influenza replication compared to untreated cells. Based on its enzymatic stability in various biochemical and physical environments, 3D8 scFv holds good potential for development as an anti-viral therapeutic.

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