Navigation Links
Researchers find chink in the armor of viral 'tummy bug'
Date:12/23/2008

Researchers at Griffith University's Institute for Glycomics in collaboration with colleagues at the University of Melbourne have moved a step closer to identifying a broad spectrum treatment for the dreaded 'viral tummy bug' or rotavirus.

These highly-infectious viruses are the leading cause of severe diarrhoea in young children, responsible for thousands of hospitalisations in the developed world, and hundreds of thousands of deaths each year in developing countries.

Institute Executive Director Professor Mark von Itzstein said research findings published in the world-leading Chemical Biology journal Nature Chemical Biology this week demanded a total rethink of how these viruses work.

"Rotaviruses are thought to infect the bodies by sticking to certain types of sugars called sialic acids on the surface of our stomach cells. They then enter cells and reproduce rapidly, causing illness," he said.

"Rotavirus vaccines are still in their infancy, as problems emerged with the first vaccine that was trialled a number of years ago. While other vaccines are now in clinical use, new directions are required in the development of potential drugs to prevent or treat this deadly virus."

He said that to better understand how carbohydrates are involved in rotavirus infection, researchers had focussed on treating mammalian cells with a protein called sialidase which cuts these surface sugars so the virus cannot attach.

Previous to his group's work most scientists believed only some of the many strains of rotavirus infection could be prevented with sialidase treatment while others were apparently immune to its effects.

This led to the conclusion that some viruses depend on sialic acid to infect the body while others were thought to cause infection independent of sialic acid.

"Unsuccessful attempts to reduce rotavirus infection with this treatment led scientists to group rotaviruses into two classes: 'sialidase-sensitive' and 'sialidase-insensitive' strains," he said.

The team used nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, 3D modelling and cell-based assays to observe the interaction between the virus and host cells.

"We found that a human strain previously through insensitive to sialidase does in fact recognise and bind to sialic acid, but it is a sialic acid not accessible to sialidase treatment." Professor von Itzstein said.

"This reveals that there is a common chink in the armour of these rotaviruses.

"This discovery is the first step in designing a broad-spectrum drug able to exploit this weakness to combat many types of human and animal rotaviruses."


'/>"/>

Contact: Jeannette Langan
j.langan@griffith.edu.au
61-755-528-654
Research Australia
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Biomedical researchers create artificial human bone marrow in a test tube
2. Princeton researchers discover new type of laser
3. UT Southwestern researchers identify gene linked to inherited form of fatal lung disease
4. James Thomson receives 2008 Massry Prize honoring stem cell researchers
5. Researchers push nature beyond its limits to create higher-density biofuels
6. Researchers advance knowledge of little nano-machines in our body
7. No quick or easy technological fix for climate change, researchers say
8. Researchers find natures shut-off switch for cellulose production
9. Researchers compile molecular manual for 100s of inherited diseases
10. Pitt researchers create non-toxic clean-up method for potentially toxic nano materials
11. Researchers identify new anti-tumor gene
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/2/2017)... 2017   TapImmune, Inc. (NASDAQ: ... in the development of innovative peptide and gene-based ... and metastatic disease, announced today it has successfully ... a second clinical lot of TPIV 200, the ... The manufactured vaccine product will be used to ...
(Date:2/1/2017)... February 1, 2017 IDTechEx Research, a leading ... technology, announces the availability of a new report, Sensors for ... Continue Reading ... ... collaborative robots. Source: IDTechEx Report "Sensors for Robotics: Technologies, Markets and ...
(Date:1/26/2017)... CITY , Jan. 26, 2017  Crossmatch, a ... unveiled a new solution aimed at combatting fraud, waste ... solution was introduced at the Action on Disaster Relief ... key meeting point for UN agencies and foreign assistance ... Fraud, waste and abuse are a largely unacknowledged ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/23/2017)... ... February 23, 2017 , ... ... evaluation of multiple immunoassay-based threat detection technologies by researchers from the Pacific ... biosensor threat detection technology was found to have the best level of ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Today, researchers can fast-track sample collection and ... other biomarkers or SNPs of interest) using one, easy-to-collect saliva sample. With the ... between insulin and other relevant biomarkers can be extensively studied through a non-invasive ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... Feb. 23, 2017  Capricor Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CAPR), a ... conditions, today announced that Linda Marbán, Ph.D, president and chief ... conferences: Cowen and Company 37th Annual ... ET Boston, MA ... am PT (12:00 pm ET) Dana Point, CA ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... SAN FRANCISCO , Feb. 23, 2017 ... company, and Beyond Type 1, a not-for-profit advocacy and ... today announced a grant from Beyond Type 1 to ... type 1 and other insulin-requiring diabetes.  ... innovative stem cell-derived cell replacement therapies with a focus ...
Breaking Biology Technology: