Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Antibody treatment protects monkeys from Hendra virus disease

20.10.2011
NIH-supported group exploring whether protection extends to Nipah virus disease

A human antibody given to monkeys infected with the deadly Hendra virus completely protected them from disease, according to a study published by National Institutes of Health (NIH) scientists and their collaborators.


This is the Hendra virus.
Credit: Courtesy Dr. Alex Hyatt, AAHL

Hendra and the closely related Nipah virus, both rare viruses that are part of the NIH biodefense research program, target the lungs and brain and have human case fatality rates of 60 percent and more than 75 percent, respectively. These diseases in monkeys mirror what happens in humans, and the study results are cause for hope that the antibody, named m102.4, ultimately may be developed into a possible treatment for people who become infected with these viruses.

In May 2010, shortly after the NIH study in monkeys successfully concluded, Australian health officials requested m102.4 for emergency use in a woman and her 12-year-old daughter. They had been exposed to Hendra virus from an ill horse that ultimately was euthanized. Both the woman and child survived and showed no side effects from the treatment.

"This is an important research advance that illustrates how scientific discoveries emerge through a steady stepwise process, and how our investment in research on countermeasures for biodefense and emerging infectious diseases can help global preparedness efforts," said Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., director of the NIH's National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

Hendra virus emerged in 1994 in Australia and primarily affects horses, which can spread the disease to humans. No person-to-person transmission of Hendra has been reported. Nipah virus emerged in 1998 in Malaysia, and also has been found in Bangladesh and India. Nipah appears to infect humans more easily than Hendra and can be transmitted from person to person.

The NIAID-supported study, which appears online in Science Translational Medicine, involved infecting 14 African green monkeys with a lethal dose of Hendra virus. Twelve of the monkeys then received two treatments with m102.4, one either at 10, 24, or 72 hours after being infected, and another 48 hours later. All 12 monkeys treated with the antibody survived. The two untreated control monkeys died eight days after being infected.

The findings are the result of a series of studies carried out by different research laboratories. A group from NIH's National Cancer Institute and the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS) discovered m102.4 in 2006 and developed the antibody for use in laboratory research. USUHS and Australian collaborators then developed an animal study model of m102.4 in ferrets infected with Nipah virus; the University of Texas Medical Branch and USUHS developed a monkey study model of Hendra and Nipah infection; and together with investigators from Boston University and NIAID's Rocky Mountain Laboratories (RML) designed and carried out the antibody trial in biosafety level-4 (BSL-4) laboratory space at RML. Because the Hendra and Nipah viruses are so deadly and there is no licensed vaccine or treatment for either of them, both viruses must be studied in maximum-containment BSL-4 laboratories.

The World Health Organization reports 475 human cases of Nipah through 2008, with 251 deaths. Through the same period, there have been seven human Hendra cases with four fatalities. There also have been many horse fatalities. In their study, the scientists cite a handful of other outbreaks of Hendra virus in horses since 2008. Since June 2011, there have been 18 outbreaks in Australia, primarily in Queensland and New South Wales, with the latest reported Oct. 10.

Both viruses are spread by fruit bats, commonly known as flying foxes, which are reservoirs for these viruses. The fruit bats, which are resistant to the diseases, are found primarily in Australia but have been found as far west as Africa, north to India and Pakistan, and east to the Philippines.

Additional studies on m102.4 as a possible treatment and as a preventive vaccine for Nipah and Hendra virus infections are being planned.

###

NIAID conducts and supports research—at NIH, throughout the United States, and worldwide—to study the causes of infectious and immune-mediated diseases, and to develop better means of preventing, diagnosing and treating these illnesses. News releases, fact sheets and other NIAID-related materials are available on the NIAID Web site at http://www.niaid.nih.gov.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

Reference: K Bossart et al. A neutralizing human monoclonal antibody protects African Green monkeys from Hendra virus challenge. Science Translational Medicine. DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3002901 (2011).

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Ken Pekoc | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.nih.gov

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht New eDNA technology used to quickly assess coral reefs
18.04.2019 | University of Hawaii at Manoa

nachricht New automated biological-sample analysis systems to accelerate disease detection
18.04.2019 | Polytechnique Montréal

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Explosion on Jupiter-sized star 10 times more powerful than ever seen on our sun

A stellar flare 10 times more powerful than anything seen on our sun has burst from an ultracool star almost the same size as Jupiter

  • Coolest and smallest star to produce a superflare found
  • Star is a tenth of the radius of our Sun
  • Researchers led by University of Warwick could only see...

Im Focus: Quantum simulation more stable than expected

A localization phenomenon boosts the accuracy of solving quantum many-body problems with quantum computers which are otherwise challenging for conventional computers. This brings such digital quantum simulation within reach on quantum devices available today.

Quantum computers promise to solve certain computational problems exponentially faster than any classical machine. “A particularly promising application is the...

Im Focus: Largest, fastest array of microscopic 'traffic cops' for optical communications

The technology could revolutionize how information travels through data centers and artificial intelligence networks

Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley have built a new photonic switch that can control the direction of light passing through optical fibers...

Im Focus: A long-distance relationship in femtoseconds

Physicists observe how electron-hole pairs drift apart at ultrafast speed, but still remain strongly bound.

Modern electronics relies on ultrafast charge motion on ever shorter length scales. Physicists from Regensburg and Gothenburg have now succeeded in resolving a...

Im Focus: Researchers 3D print metamaterials with novel optical properties

Engineers create novel optical devices, including a moth eye-inspired omnidirectional microwave antenna

A team of engineers at Tufts University has developed a series of 3D printed metamaterials with unique microwave or optical properties that go beyond what is...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Revered mathematicians and computer scientists converge with 200 young researchers in Heidelberg!

17.04.2019 | Event News

First dust conference in the Central Asian part of the earth’s dust belt

15.04.2019 | Event News

Fraunhofer FHR at the IEEE Radar Conference 2019 in Boston, USA

09.04.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

New automated biological-sample analysis systems to accelerate disease detection

18.04.2019 | Life Sciences

Explosion on Jupiter-sized star 10 times more powerful than ever seen on our sun

18.04.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

New eDNA technology used to quickly assess coral reefs

18.04.2019 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>