Virus-like particles (VLPs) are protein-based structures that mimic viruses and bind to antibodies. Because VLPs aren't infectious, they show promise as vaccine platforms for many viral diseases, including influenza. Since details about influenza VLPs are scant, a team of researchers developed a 3-D model based on the 1918 H1 pandemic influenza virus.
A new tool they call FluVision allows researchers to witness influenza infection in a living animal in action, helping them better understand what happens when a virus infects the lungs and the body responds.
Higher daily doses of rifampin, a cornerstone of tuberculosis treatment, killed more TB bacteria in sputum cultures, and the higher doses did so without increasing the adverse effects of treatment, according to a randomized controlled trial.
For the first time, scientists have directly visualized real-time structural changes in the surface protein of the influenza virus that may help the virus fuse with and enter target cells before hijacking them. Single molecules of the protein were found to stretch toward target cells, then refold and try again 5 to 10 times per second. The discovery may help develop more effective vaccines and better understand other viruses, including Ebola, HIV, and SARS.
The new influenza drug Xofluza was approved for clinical use in Japan in February 2018. Scientists have now investigated the drug's mode of action in detail, and uncovered possible mechanisms by which viral resistance to it could emerge.
Researchers have found a way to predict whether someone exposed to the flu virus is likely to become ill. They used a computational approach to pinpoint a blood-based genetic biomarker to determine an individual's susceptibility to the disease.
The phylogenetic tree of the 2013-2016 Ebola epidemic doesn't just tell us how the Ebola virus was able to evolve: it also reveals which events and preventive measures accelerated or slowed down its spread. These findings open up new perspectives for the containment of epidemics.
Mucus and other airway secretions that are expelled when a person with the flu coughs or exhales appear to protect the virus when it becomes airborne, regardless of humidity levels, a creative experiment discovered. The results refute long-standing studies that indicated the influenza virus degrades and is inactivated sooner as the humidity increases.
Dogs are a potential reservoir for a future influenza pandemic, according to a new study. The study demonstrated that influenza virus can jump from pigs into canines and that influenza is becoming increasingly diverse in canines.
A new study shows a rapid rise in the percentage of hospitals that require their workers to be vaccinated against influenza -- except among hospitals that focus on treating the nation's military veterans. The percentage of Veterans Affairs hospitals that have a flu vaccine mandate rose from 1 percent in 2013 to 4 percent in 2017. But at the same time, the percentage of non-VA hospitals requiring shots rose from 44 percent to nearly 70 percent.
A potential global catastrophic risk-level pandemic pathogen will most likely have a respiratory mode of transmission; be contagious during the incubation period, prior to symptom development, or when infected individuals show only mild symptoms; and need specific host population factors (e.g., immunologically naïve persons) and additional intrinsic microbial pathogenicity characteristics (e.g., a low but significant case fatality rate) that together substantially increase disease spread and infection. RNA viruses are the biggest threat.
Using an original mathematical and statistical analysis method, scientists analyzed a Thai cohort in order to help identify individuals at risk of infection. By modeling changes in antibody levels after successive infections with the different dengue serotypes, the scientists were able to establish the profile of these individuals.
Prescription cough and cold medicines containing the opioid hydrocodone were more likely to cause serious side effects in children than those containing codeine, according to a new study. The research supports recent U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) restrictions on prescription hydrocodone- and codeine-containing cough medicines for children and suggests that opioids in general should not be prescribed for coughs and colds in pediatric populations.
A new study suggests that a common treatment for erectile dysfunction combined with the flu vaccine may be able to help the immune system mop up cancer cells left behind after surgery. The study shows that this unconventional strategy can reduce the spread of cancer by more than 90 percent in a mouse model. It is now being evaluated in a world-first clinical trial.
Dietary fiber increases survival in influenza-infected mice by setting the immune system at a healthy level of responsiveness, according to a preclinical study published May 15 in the journal Immunity. A high-fiber diet blunts harmful, excessive immune responses in the lungs while boosting antiviral immunity by activating T cells. These dual benefits were mediated by changes in the composition of gut bacteria.