Congratulations Matthias and Artem on our study on neutralizing antibodies against HCMV!
Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) can cause severe diseases in fetuses, newborns, and immunocompromised individuals. Currently, no vaccines are approved, and treatment options are limited. Here, we analyzed the human B cell response of four HCMV top neutralizers from a cohort of 9,000 individuals. By single-cell analyses of memory B cells targeting the pentameric and trimeric HCMV surface complexes, we identified vulnerable sites on the shared gH/gL subunits as well as complex-specific subunits UL128/130/131A and gO. Using high-resolution cryogenic electron microscopy, we revealed the structural basis of the neutralization mechanisms of antibodies targeting various binding sites. Moreover, we identified highly potent antibodies that neutralized a broad spectrum of HCMV strains, including primary clinical isolates, that outperform known antibodies used in clinical trials. Our study provides a deep understanding of the mechanisms of HCMV neutralization and identifies promising antibody candidates to prevent and treat HCMV infection.