Breaking News
February 19, 2019 - Customized Micropatterning for Improved Physiological Relevance
February 19, 2019 - Unique gene therapy approach paves new way to tackle rare, inherited diseases
February 19, 2019 - Activating gene that helps excite neurons reverses depression in male mice
February 19, 2019 - Science Puzzling Out Differences in Gut Bacteria Around the World
February 19, 2019 - Cells that destroy the intestine
February 19, 2019 - On recovery, vulnerability and ritual: An exhibit in white
February 19, 2019 - Scientific Duo Gets Back To Basics To Make Childbirth Safer
February 19, 2019 - COPD patients need more support when understanding new chest symptoms
February 19, 2019 - Using light-based method for production of pharmaceutical molecules
February 19, 2019 - Scientists find link between inflammation and cancer
February 19, 2019 - The High Cost Of Sex: Insurers Often Don’t Pay For Drugs To Treat Problems
February 19, 2019 - Hearing impairment associated with accelerated cognitive decline with age
February 19, 2019 - Researchers identify multiple genetic variants associated with body fat distribution
February 19, 2019 - Influenza and common cold are completely different diseases, study shows
February 19, 2019 - Scientists untangle how microbes manufacture key antibiotic compound
February 19, 2019 - Greater primary care physician supply associated with longer life spans
February 19, 2019 - HIV-1 protein suppresses immune response more broadly than thought
February 19, 2019 - For 2020 Dem Hopefuls, ‘Medicare-For-All’ Is A Defining Issue, However They Define It
February 19, 2019 - KU professor discusses promise of brain-computer interface to aid, restore communication
February 19, 2019 - Highly effective solution for detecting onset of aggregation in nanoparticles
February 19, 2019 - Early marker of cardiac damage triggered by cancer treatment identified
February 19, 2019 - Antidepressant drug could save people from deadly sepsis, research suggests
February 19, 2019 - CRISPR technology creates pluripotent stem cells that are ‘invisible’ to the immune system
February 19, 2019 - New study establishes how stress favors breast cancer growth and spread
February 19, 2019 - Midlife Systemic Inflammation Linked to Later Cognitive Decline
February 19, 2019 - Therapy derived from parasitic worms downregulates proinflammatory pathways
February 19, 2019 - Antimicrobial reusable coffee cups are less likely to become contaminated with bacteria, study shows
February 19, 2019 - Harnessing the evolutionary games played by cancer cells to advance therapies
February 19, 2019 - AHA News: Heart Transplant Survivor Gets Wedding Proposal at Finish Line
February 19, 2019 - HIV hidden in patients’ cells can now be accurately measured
February 19, 2019 - Research finds reasons for sudden cardiac death in patients with stable ischemic disease
February 19, 2019 - New protocol could help physicians to rule out bacterial infections in infants
February 19, 2019 - Women experiencing miscarriage should be offered treatment choices
February 19, 2019 - New protocol can help identify febrile infants at low risk for serious bacterial infections
February 19, 2019 - Innovative way to block HIV runs into a roadblock
February 19, 2019 - Springer Nature with BCRF conduct pilot project to make their research datasets more accessible
February 19, 2019 - Study finds neuromelanin-sensitive MRI as potential biomarker for psychosis
February 19, 2019 - Improvements in cardiovascular care for elderly save billions in health care costs
February 19, 2019 - Chilean food regulations are changing food perceptions and purchasing habits, study suggests
February 19, 2019 - Index endoscopy results are crucial for assessment of Barrett’s patients
February 18, 2019 - Breast cancer screening age should be lowered to 35
February 18, 2019 - Brain synchronization depends on the language of communication
February 18, 2019 - Drug Company Payments Over Time May Influence Rx Practices
February 18, 2019 - Despite socioeconomic gains, black-white ‘health gap’ remains
February 18, 2019 - Researchers report progress in the treatment of aggressive brain tumors
February 18, 2019 - Scientists discover trigger that turns strep infections into devastating disease
February 18, 2019 - Scanning children’s teeth may predict future mental health issues
February 18, 2019 - Health Highlights: Feb. 14, 2019
February 18, 2019 - New knowledge could help predict and prevent depression
February 18, 2019 - More primary care physicians leads to longer life spans | News Center
February 18, 2019 - Study examines link between supply of primary care physicians and life expectancy
February 18, 2019 - New study assesses screen time in young children
February 18, 2019 - Patented IU discovery to treat ARDS has been optioned to Theratome Bio
February 18, 2019 - Software found to be four times better at monitoring ovarian cancer
February 18, 2019 - Male Y chromosomes not ‘genetic wastelands’
February 18, 2019 - Hormone therapy during gender transition may increase risk for cardiovascular events
February 18, 2019 - NICE renews accreditation for Advanced
February 18, 2019 - FDA Grants Orphan Drug Designation to Amplyx Pharmaceuticals for APX001 for Treatment of Cryptococcosis
February 18, 2019 - Molecule effective in killing tuberculosis bacteria
February 18, 2019 - Columbia researchers unravel why some glioblastomas respond to immunotherapy
February 18, 2019 - Men who are able to do ten push-ups are less likely to have a stroke
February 18, 2019 - Blood-brain barrier disruption could lead to age-related cognitive decline
February 18, 2019 - Combination of PARP inhibitor and immunotherapy results in tumor regression in SCLC mouse models
February 18, 2019 - Heavy smoking could lead to vision loss, study finds
February 18, 2019 - New diagnostic test for malaria uses spit, not blood
February 18, 2019 - New therapeutic molecules show promise in reversing memory loss related to depression, aging
February 18, 2019 - Darla Shine joins anti-vaccination campaigners
February 18, 2019 - New study outlines sex-specific issues in ischemic heart disease
February 18, 2019 - Drug combinations could become first-line treatment for metastatic kidney cancer
February 18, 2019 - Lifetime adversity, increased neural processing during trauma combine to intensify core PTSD symptoms
February 18, 2019 - HRQoL Scores Decrease With Treatment Line in Multiple Myeloma
February 18, 2019 - Convincing evidence that type 2 diabetes is a cause of erectile dysfunction
February 18, 2019 - Study offers implications of advanced age in evaluation, management of ischemic heart disease
February 18, 2019 - Children from homes with flame-retardant sofa have high SVOC concentration in their blood
February 18, 2019 - Art Institute of Chicago announces results of research on five terracotta sculptures
February 18, 2019 - New PET/CT tracer shows high detection rate for diagnosis of acute venous thromboembolism
February 18, 2019 - Smoking may blight immune response against melanoma and reduce survival
February 18, 2019 - How Inactivity and Junk Food Can Harm Your Brain
February 18, 2019 - Diabetes tops common conditions for frequent geriatric emergency patients
February 18, 2019 - Longer-lived sperm produces offspring with healthier lifespans
Researchers decipher key component behind rising epidemic of pathogens in West Africa

Researchers decipher key component behind rising epidemic of pathogens in West Africa

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print

A research team from several institutions being led by the University of California San Diego has deciphered a key component behind a rising epidemic of pathogens that the World Health Organization (WHO) recently added to its list of critical emerging diseases.

New research published July 12 in the journal PLOS Pathogens uncovered a protein enabling the replication of arenaviruses, pathogens carried by rodents that can infect humans and cause lethal hemorrhagic fevers. According to the WHO, the Lassa virus-;an arenavirus with symptoms similar to the Ebola virus-;is currently widespread in West Africa, with nearly 300,000 infections and more than 5,000 deaths reported per year. Research and identification of clinical targets to combat these diseases are urgently needed, the WHO has indicated.

Research led by Elina Zúñiga’s laboratory in UC San Diego’s Division of Biological Sciences identified DDX3, a protein involved in RNA metabolism, as a key factor promoting arenavirus multiplication through its unexpected ability to promote viral RNA synthesis and dismantle normal human immune system defenses.

The study, led by María Eugenia Loureiro and Andre Zorzetto-Fernandes, two postdoctoral fellows in Zúñiga’s lab, may pave the way to new therapeutic treatments for arenaviruses and hemorrhagic fever.

“Our results uncover novel mechanisms used by arenavirus to exploit the host machinery and subvert immunity, singling out DDX3 as a potential host target for developing new therapies against highly pathogenic arenaviruses,” the authors write in the study.

“Mortality due to Lassa fever can rise up to 50 percent for hospitalized patients in some outbreaks and to 90 percent for women in the last month of pregnancy,” said Zúñiga. “Currently there is no vaccine and no effective treatment for this virus. Therefore, understanding how arenaviruses exploit the host molecules is important and may lead to new treatments to fight these deadly infections.”

As part of the search for new drug targets, Zúñiga’s research team focused on arenavirus nucleoproteins, which play important roles in the viral life cycle and evasion of the immune system. The researchers analyzed protein interactions in a human cell line expressing the Lassa virus nucleoprotein. This revealed several candidate human proteins, whose roles were then investigated in loss-of-function experiments in infected cells. DDX3 emerged as a human protein that enhances viral growth.

Further experiments with Lassa virus and Junín virus, an arenavirus endemic in Argentina, confirmed the importance of DDX3 in arenavirus infection of human cells. The results suggest that DDX3 may have two distinct roles. First, it suppresses the production of type I interferons, key proteins needed for a robust antiviral state and immune response to infection. DDX3 also appears to enhance synthesis of arenavirus RNA, an important step in viral multiplication. These two DDX3-dependent arenavirus exploitation strategies were previously undiscovered.

Overall, these findings reveal the importance of DDX3 in arenavirus infection and identify it as a potential target for new anti-arenavirus strategies.

“This work was the result of a team effort from scientists at several institutions and raises new important questions on the mechanisms by which DDX3 favors arenavirus RNA synthesis and suppression of interferons,” said Zúñiga. “We are excited to continue this line of research to further evaluate in animal models the potential of targeting DDX3 to counteract infections with arenaviruses and perhaps other hemorrhagic fever viruses.”

Source:

https://ucsdnews.ucsd.edu/pressrelease/scientists_id_protein_exploited_by_virus_ravaging_west_africa

Tagged with:

About author

Related Articles