Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Combating the deathly Coronavirus

15.03.2013
Infection Biologists of the German Primate Center have identified host cell factors that activate the dangerous human coronavirus EMC and might be potential targets for therapeutic intervention

Scientists all over the world are on a quest for an antidote since the first patient died from the new coronavirus in summer 2012. Infection Researchers from the German Primate Center have now identified enzymes that activate the virus for infection. The scientists hope that their discovery will contribute to the development of treatment for the life-threatening disease.

The coronavirus 2c EMC/2012 causes severe respiratory disease and renal failure. So far more than half of all patients with laboratory confirmed infection died from the disease. The virus presumably originated in the Arabian Peninsula. Genetic analyses have revealed a close relationship to viruses in bats. However, it is at present unclear if the new coronavirus was transmitted from bats to humans.

Researchers at the DPZ have investigated the host cell entry of the new coronavirus jointly with colleagues from Hannover, Essen, Bonn and San Francisco. The paper by the first authors Stefanie Gierer and Stephanie Bertram was published online ahead of print by the renowned Journal of Virology.

The surface protein („spike“) of the virus attaches to host cells via the newly discovered receptor DPP4 (Raj et al. 2013, Nature) and subsequently the virus enters the cells. The activation of the spike-protein by host cell enzymes, proteases, is a prerequisite to infectious viral entry. The researchers at DPZ have now identified two of these activating proteases, both of which constitute potential targets for intervention. Also, the group demonstrated that a serum derived from an EMC patient can block the spike-mediated entry.

This proves that humans are able to generate blocking (so called “neutralizing”) antibodies against the virus. For their research the team worked with harmless, artificial virus-like particles (“pseudotypes”), which may now be used as a diagnostic tool for identifying such neutralizing antibodies.

“The human coronavirus EMC is a potential threat to public health,” says Stefan Pöhlmann, senior author of the study. “But our research and the research of other groups identified potential targets for intervention and might help to improve our diagnostic tools.“

Original publication:
Stefanie Gierer, Stephanie Bertram, Franziska Kaup, Florian Wrensch, Adeline Heurich, Annika Krämer-Kühl, Kathrin Welsch, Michael Winkler, Benjamin Meyer, Christian Drosten, Ulf Dittmer, Thomas von Hahn, Graham Simmons, Heike Hofmann & Stefan Pöhlmann (2013): The spike-protein of the emerging betacoronavirus EMC uses a novel coronavirus receptor for entry, can be activated by TMPRSS2 and is targeted by neutralizing antibodies. Journal of Virology. Epub ahead of print 6 March 2013. doi:10.1128/JVI.00128-13

Contact

Prof. Dr. Stefan Pöhlmann
Tel: +49 551 3851-150
E-Mail: spoehlmann@dpz.eu
Astrid Slizewski (Stabsstelle Kommunikation)
Tel: +49 551 3851-359
E-Mail: aslizewski@dpz.eu

Printable images are provided by the DPZ’s public relations department or may be downloaded from the photodatabase of our website. In case of publication, please send a copy or a link as reference.

The German Primate Center (DPZ) in Göttingen, Germany, conducts basic research on and with primates in the areas of infectious diseases, neurosciences and organismic biology. In addition, it operates four field stations abroad and is a competence and reference center for primate research. The DPZ is one of the 86 research and infrastructure institutions of the Leibnitz Association in Germany.

Astrid Slizewski | idw
Further information:
http://www.dpz.eu
http://jvi.asm.org/content/early/2013/02/28/JVI.00128-13.abstract?sid=0d94902f-24cc-4dc5-a142-4a888fb4ba9e

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Researchers identify potentially druggable mutant p53 proteins that promote cancer growth
09.12.2016 | Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

nachricht Plant-based substance boosts eyelash growth
09.12.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Angewandte Polymerforschung IAP

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Electron highway inside crystal

Physicists of the University of Würzburg have made an astonishing discovery in a specific type of topological insulators. The effect is due to the structure of the materials used. The researchers have now published their work in the journal Science.

Topological insulators are currently the hot topic in physics according to the newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung. Only a few weeks ago, their importance was...

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers identify potentially druggable mutant p53 proteins that promote cancer growth

09.12.2016 | Life Sciences

Scientists produce a new roadmap for guiding development & conservation in the Amazon

09.12.2016 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation

Satellites, airport visibility readings shed light on troops' exposure to air pollution

09.12.2016 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>