This technology relates to the therapeutic use of antibodies to decrease the potential neurodegenerative effect of the HERV-K retrovirus. Previous work has shown that patients with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) can have HERV-K activation. In animal models, activation of HERV-K can lead to neurodegenerative symptoms similar to those exhibited by ALS patients. This neurodegenerative effect is thought to be caused by the release of HERV-K envelope proteins into the extracellular space. Work with monoclonal antibodies in vitro has neutralized the toxicity of this protein.
Currently there is no treatment available that targets HERV-K. Hence use of this antibody could be of therapeutic efficacy.