Navigation Links
Mutating viruses helps produce antibodies

Scientists at the University of California reported that, a rapidly mutating gene in a virus that preys on bacteria may help lead to a new way to create artificial antibodies. This surprising mechanism may even be found in humans and other life, suggesting a new way of generating biological diversity.//

Jeff Miller, author of this study, the viruses are a treasure trove of fascinating biological mechanisms. This was one of those efforts that we were continuously surprised by as we learned more.

The researchers studied the bacterial family known as Bordatella. The germs are responsible for very contagious and potentially lethal respiratory diseases such as whooping cough. Bordatella is afflicted by a plague of its own, a kind of virus known as a bacteriophage or "bacteria eater." This phage infects Bordatella using its tail-like structures, which latch onto a specific molecule on the bacteria's surface.

To avoid the virus, the bacteria frequently switches its surface molecules, much as a person might switch their locks to prevent someone with a key from getting in. "In the world of microbial biowarfare, standing still in the face of a ferocious viral attack is a recipe for disaster," explained microbiologist Graham Hatfull of the University of Pittsburgh.

Bordatella can switch between two distinct forms -- one for colonizing the respiratory tracts of its hosts, and one better adapted for life outside a victim. The surface protein the phage latches onto is only present when Bordatella is in its colonizing phase.

The investigators, along with collaborators at the University of California in Santa Barbara and in Cambridge, England, discovered one in a million phage could remarkably generate trillions of possible keys to latch onto Bordatella's surface. The virus therefore rapidly keeps up with any of the bacteria's attempts to evolve resistance, adapting to attack the microbe even when the germ is not in a host.
< br> The scientists are coming up with biotechnology applications such as artificial antibodies from this mutation process by working with chemist Gregory Weiss of the University of California in Irvine. For instance, by taking the phage's tail-like protein and mutating it, they could come up with a chemical that could latch onto deadly toxins.

The researchers also suspect this highly targeted mutation process may exist in more than just viruses. "I would not be surprised if this turns up in genomes of other organisms," Miller said. They are beginning to examine the human genome for the genetic signatures of this mechanism, as well as yeast and fruit flies.

The details of how this mutation process works still are unclear, but unexpectedly it seems to involve an enzyme tied to deadly retroviruses, such as HIV, known as reverse transcriptase. The enzyme apparently analyzes a master copy of the gene for the tail-like structures to modify a second copy of the gene, which is the version the virus uses to create the trillion keys.


Related medicine news :

1. Birds breed viruses
2. Specific Immune Mechanism against DNA viruses
3. Henda and Nipah viruses should fret: as there is hope for a vaccine.
4. Battery power from viruses in the pipeline
5. Deciphering the protection agent 0f viruses to help penetrate them
6. Sperm washing helps couples – Breakthrough in focu
7. Patient’s perception of health status helps in better recover
8. New vaccine helps allergy and asthma patients
9. New vaccine helps allergy and asthma patients
10. Now umbilical cord helps in stroke treatment.
11. Spirituality helps lessen arthritic pain
Post Your Comments:

(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... healthcare compliance program management, will showcase a range of technology and learning solutions ... Living (NCAL) Convention and Expo to be held October 14–18, 2017 at the ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... , ... Planet Fitness, one of the largest and fastest growing franchisors and ... flagship location in Covington, LA at 401 N. U.S. Highway 190, in January of ... Depot in the Holiday Square shopping center. Its location allows it to serve both ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... IsoComforter, Inc. ( ), ... of an innovative new design of the shoulder pad. The shoulder pad provides ... while controlling your pain while using cold therapy. By utilizing ice and water that ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Asante, a nationally recognized health system in ... existing home health joint venture through an agreement, effective October 1, 2017, to ... home health company with Asante, delivering clinically integrated care, for the past eight ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Dr. Parsa Mohebi, ... a medical article to the newly revamped Cosmetic Town journal section, ... hair transplant procedure known as Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE). , Dr. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... Divoti USA will engrave and process all non-coated stainless ... FDA requirements, which stipulates new criteria regarding medical device manufacture and ... ID jewelry such as Medical ID Bracelets, can rest assured that ... the new FDA requirements . ... Divoti offers this dark mark fiber laser engraving process with ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... , Oct. 11, 2017  True Health, ... has amplified its effort during National Breast Cancer ... hereditary cancer risks. ... Clinical Oncology calculated that more than 10 million ... inherited mutations in BRCA1 or BRCA2 and have not ...
(Date:10/7/2017)... 2017   Provista, a proven leader in ... in purchasing power, today announced a new resource area ... Newsroom is the online home for case studies, ... bios, news releases, slideshows and events. ... of resources at their fingertips, viewers can also watch ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: