Navigation Links
Poxvirus potency uncovered in new atomic map
Date:2/1/2008

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. Scientists at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and Saint Louis University used X-ray crystallography to uncover new details about the infectious potency of poxviruses, furthering the understanding of how one protein in viral infections can subvert the bodys immune system.

Having high-resolution detail of this protein on hand will speed the discovery of new drugs to combat inflammation and immune diseases such as atherosclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis, the researchers said.

The findings are published in the online edition of journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and will soon appear in a print edition.

Now we have a visual blueprint to guide our future studies on interferon-gamma binding protein, which one day may be used to prevent inflammatory disease, said Mark R. Walter, Ph.D., an associate professor in the UAB Department of Microbiology and senior author on the study.

Interferon-gamma binding protein (IFN-y) is notorious for the role it plays in helping poxviruses replicate. Normally when a virus enters the bloodstream, the immune system fights back by producing IFN-y, which tells surrounding cells to fight the infection.

Remarkably, somewhere during the evolution of the poxvirus, it captured an IFN-y gene from its host and incorporated some of the protein structure into its own. As a result poxvirus has a very efficient blocker of the IFN-y antiviral response, Walter said.

The new study shows this blocking ability through crystallography, the science of mapping the atomic structure of molecules by looking at their interaction with an X-ray beam.

Poxviruses include many classes of the invasive organism such as smallpox, cowpox and monkeypox. Smallpox in particular has played a tragic role in human history: estimates show it caused between 300 million and 500 million deaths in the 20th Century.

Smallpox was declared officially eradicated in 1979, but other poxviruses remain a health threat.

The damage that the smallpox virus has done to mankind is horrific and enormous, which is why we think its so important to understand more about the poxviruses and how they operate, said Mark Buller, Ph.D., professor of microbiology and immunology at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine and a study author. The more knowledge we have, the better we should be able to cope with other major viruses and diseases in the future.


'/>"/>

Contact: Troy Goodman
tdgoodman@uab.edu
205-934-8938
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Agent that triggers immune response in plants is uncovered
2. Hemoglobin uncovered
3. Anthrax cellular entry point uncovered
4. Scientists retrace evolution with first atomic structure of an ancient protein
5. Atomic bomb survivor, scientists mark 60 years of long-term radiation study
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/26/2017)... 25, 2017  Securus Technologies, a leading provider ... public safety, investigation, corrections and monitoring, announces the ... "Too often, too many offenders return ... jails are trying to tackle this ongoing problem ... and family members. While significant steps are underway, Securus ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... 22, 2017 With the biometrics market ... identifies four technologies that innovative and agile startups ... share in the changing competitive landscape: multifactor authentication ...   "Companies can no longer afford ... says Dimitrios Pavlakis , Industry Analyst at ...
(Date:2/21/2017)... , February 21, 2017 Der ... US-Dollar wachsen. Nach einem Gespräch mit mehr als 50 Vertretern ... Hindernisse zu überwinden gilt, um diese Prognose zu realisieren. ... ... die Mobilisierung der finanziellen Mittel für die Biobank, die ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/29/2017)... 2017  Vermillion, Inc. (NASDAQ: VRML), a bio-analytical ... its results for the fourth quarter and full ... marked a pivotal year for us with our ... distribution agreements, major reimbursement progress with Medicare, positive ... In addition we cleared our 2 nd ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... 29, 2017 "Surging application of gesture control ... government are expected to drive the growth of gesture ... recognition market is expected to be worth USD 18.98 ... between 2017 and 2022. The touchless sensing market is ... growing at a CAGR of 17.44% between 2017 and ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... , March 29, 2017 WuXi Biologics, ... company dedicated to biologics and a WuXi AppTec ... 2017 Asia-Pacific Best Bioprocessing Excellence Award from IMAPAC, ... Excellence Awards aims to recognize outstanding leaders and ... Featuring top bioprocessing and biomanufacturing experts in the ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... March 29, 2017 , ... (March 29, 2017) — ... been approved as an active member of the Mexican Direct Selling Association ... and consumers in relationship marketing. This professional organization fosters loyal and fair competition ...
Breaking Biology Technology: