Navigation Links
MU scientist eyeing enzymes that could help fight flu
Date:11/17/2011

The influenza virus remains a worldwide threat to humans, causing an average of 36,000 deaths and 200,000 hospitalizations each year in the United States alone. As health care professionals prepare for another flu season, a University of Missouri scientist is studying how two enzymes could be used to stop the virus in its tracks.

Bumsuk Hahm, PhD, and his colleagues at MU have received a $1.8 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to examine how the enzymes influence the immune system's ability to fight infection. Called sphingosine 1-phosphate lyase (SPL) and sphingosine kinase 1 (SK1), they are among a group of metabolizing enzymes that affect many cellular processes, including cell growth, survival, movement and specialization.

"We know these enzymes influence multiple biological mechanisms and could lead to promising drug candidates, but scientists have never studied how these enzymes could be used to fight influenza," said Hahm, an assistant professor of surgery, molecular microbiology and immunology. "There are a lot of seasonal flu strains that are resistant to current treatments, including some strains could cause a global pandemic, so it's important that we identify and develop new targets for the treatment of influenza."

In a study published in the Journal of Virology, Hahm's research revealed that the enzymes affect the immune system's ability to detect viruses and resist infection. The new NIH grant will allow him to translate his study from cells to mice, an important step toward the development of a new treatment for humans.

"We found that when we alter the enzymes, the SPL enzyme stops the flu virus' ability to replicate, while the SK1 enzyme helps the virus to replicate," Hahm said. "If we can specifically activate SPL or inhibit SK1, we can identify a target for drug therapies that will block the spread of the influenza virus."

In November 2011, the MU School of Medicine presented Hahm with its most prestigious award for scientists, the Dorsett L. Spurgeon Distinguished Medical Research Award. Hahm received his doctorate in molecular virology from Pohang University of Science and Technology in South Korea and then joined the virology division at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif. At Scripps, Dr. Hahm studied viral immunology and viral pathogenesis before joining the MU School of Medicine as a faculty member in 2008.


'/>"/>
Contact: Laura Gerding, APR
gerdingla@health.missouri.edu
573-882-9193
University of Missouri School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Jefferson scientists deliver toxic genes to effectively kill pancreatic cancer cells
2. Scientist plans to test for blood pressure genes affected by age
3. Scientists identify novel inhibitor of human microRNA
4. Argonne scientists peer into heart of compound that may detect chemical, biological weapons
5. MU scientists go green with gold, distribute environmentally friendly nanoparticles
6. Scientists identify gene that may contribute to improved rice yield
7. Scientists discover why a mothers high-fat diet contributes to obesity in her children
8. MU scientists see how HIV matures into an infection
9. Earth scientists keep an eye on Texas
10. Thinking it through: Scientists call for policy to guide biofuels industry toward sustainability
11. Scientists identify a molecule that coordinates the movement of cells
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
MU scientist eyeing enzymes that could help fight flu
(Date:2/3/2016)... Calif. , Feb. 3, 2016 Vigilant ... Police Department in Missouri ... license plate reader (LPR) data from Vigilant Solutions. ... hit-and-run case in which the victim was walking out of a convenience ... parking space next to his vehicle, striking his vehicle ...
(Date:2/2/2016)... Feb. 2, 2016 Checkpoint Inhibitors for ... Market Are you interested in the future ... for checkpoint inhibitors. Visiongain,s report gives those predictions ... and national level. Avoid falling behind in ... opportunities and revenues those emerging cancer therapies can ...
(Date:2/1/2016)... 1, 2016 Rising sales of ... global touchfree intuitive gesture control market size ... sales of consumer electronics coupled with new technological advancements ... size through 2020   --> ... new technological advancements to drive global touchfree intuitive gesture ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/8/2016)... Feb. 8, 2016  CytRx Corporation (NASDAQ: ... specializing in oncology, today announced that it has ... with Hercules Technology Growth Capital, Inc. and Hercules ... in financing. --> ... million of financing under the loan and security ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... Novan, Inc. today announced that Director Robert A. Ingram ... In addition, Robert Keegan has been appointed to the ... --> North Carolina . ... of $32.8 million of net proceeds in a private Mezzanine B ... the Research Triangle area of North Carolina . ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... 2016  BioElectronics Corporation (OTC Pink: BIEL), the ... that it is responding to a notice of ... and Exchange Commission posted on the agency website.  ... the Board of BioElectronics Corporation and the Edward ... The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University.   ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... February 08, 2016 , ... Bulk food product ... foods at various stages of the production process. Despite frequently inspecting loose product ... products post packaging such as sacks of dry powders. , Mettler-Toledo Product Inspection's ...
Breaking Biology Technology: