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Thursday, 17 December 2015

Compound to trigger innate immune system to fight against viruses

Researchers from UW Medicine and associated collaborators developed a drug like molecule that can able to activate innate immune system to control range of RNA viruses like West Nile, Hepatitis C, Dengue, Respiratory syncytial, Nipah, Influenza A, Lassa and even Ebola. The research was published recently in Journal of Virology, which had shown promising evidence for creating a broad-spectrum of antiviral.

Cells under a microscope in a UW Medicine Immunity Lab.
Source: UW Health News/Dennis Wise

Michael Gale Jr., professor in Immunology at the University of Washington and director at UW Center for Innate Immunity and Immune Disease reported at UW Health Science news, “Our compound has an antiviral effect against all these viruses”.

The molecule which is present in all of our cells called RIG-I is a cellular protein called pathogen recognition receptor. These receptors can able to detect viral RNA and signal innate immune system to trigger essential mechanisms to limit and control the viral infection. The signal able to induce many innate immune responses and expression of antiviral genes to limit the viral infection. Such activation was proved with successful experiments on cells and in mice. Researchers reported that next step would be to test dosing and to look for stability in animal models and then finally over humans. The whole process would be expected to take around 5years.


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