Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A Hairpin To Fight HIV

30.10.2007
Hairpin-shaped mimetics imitate the helical protein that plays a role in the spread of HIV

When a host cell is infected with HIV, the virus brings its own genetic material into the host cell. This cell then replicates, reads the viral RNA, and uses it as a blueprint to produce more viral proteins. Complete viruses are then released to attack the next cells.

A team of researchers from the University of Zurich (Switzerland) and the University of Washington (USA) has now developed a new potential starting point for a drug that could intervene in this deadly cycle. As reported in the journal Angewandte Chemie, it involves a hairpin-shaped molecule that imitates the spatial structure of an important viral protein and should thus stop the discharge of viral RNA from the cell nucleus.

An important step in the lifecycle of HIV—and a potential point of attack for treatment—is as follows: The viral RNA produced in the nucleus of the host cell is transported as a long strand out through pores in the cell membrane into the cell’s cytoplasm, where it is translated into proteins or packed into a viral shell. This discharge is an active process carried out by a viral protein called Rev. For this process, many Rev units have to attach to a binding site on the viral RNA, called the Rev-responsive element (RRE). The search for an effective RRE-binding inhibitor has thus far remained unsuccessful.

... more about:
»HIV »Peptide »REV »RNA »Viral »imitate »mimetic

A small arginine-rich domain consisting of 17 amino acids allows the Rev protein to recognize its binding site, a furrow on the RNA. Once bound to the RNA, this domain adopts a helical form. It is this protein structure that the team led by John A. Robinson and Gabriele Varani wished to reverse engineer in order to disrupt the binding of Rev to RRE.

The researchers produced a peptide mimetic, a molecule that imitates the structure of the desired peptide. The group has previously shown that α-helical peptides can be imitated by something called a β-hairpin turn. The researchers attached side chains to the robust scaffold formed by the “hairpin” so that the groups of atoms required for molecular recognition are presented just as they are in the original helical peptide.

A series of screening steps, starting from a small family of cyclic hairpin peptide mimetics, led to the development of a structure that firmly and correctly binds RRE. This compound also has the ability to displace the Rev protein from Rev-RRE complexes.

“Hairpin peptide mimetics are a highly promising new class of drugs,” says Robinson. “We hope that it will be possible to develop a drug suitable for HIV treatment based on this foundation.”

Author: John A. Robinson, Universität Zürich (Switzerland), http://www.oci.unizh.ch/groups/robinson.html

Title: Design of β-Hairpin Peptidomimetics That Inhibit Binding of α-Helical HIV-1 Rev Protein to the Rev Response Element RNA

Angewandte Chemie International Edition, doi: 10.1002/anie.200702801

John A. Robinson | Angewandte Chemie
Further information:
http://pressroom.angewandte.org
http://www.oci.unizh.ch/groups/robinson.html

Further reports about: HIV Peptide REV RNA Viral imitate mimetic

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery
20.01.2017 | GSI Helmholtzzentrum für Schwerionenforschung GmbH

nachricht Seeking structure with metagenome sequences
20.01.2017 | DOE/Joint Genome Institute

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>