Epigallocatechin gallate, the main polyphenol in green tea, binds to the T-cell receptor, CD4: Potential for HIV-1 therapy.
This study evaluated the effects of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a green tea compound, on human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. In the first stage of infection HIV attacks CD4 cells that normally support the immune system function. The interaction between HIV and CD4 cells is made possible by the so called gp120 molecule that is part of the virus and binds to CD4 cells at a specific site. This process can be inhibited if another molecule binds to CD4 at the same site as gp120. The present experiments demonstrated that EGCG bound to CD4 at the gp120 binding site, thereby inhibiting the progression of HIV infection. The results demonstrated that EGCG can be effective against HIV infection. More details can be found in the study.
Williamson MP, McCormick TG, Nance CL, Shearer WT. Epigallocatechin gallate, the main polyphenol in green tea, binds to the T-cell receptor, CD4: Potential for HIV-1 therapy. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2006 Dec;118(6):1369-74.