December 1, 2022

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The important breakthrough to deal with this terrible virus: CCHF

The important breakthrough to deal with this terrible virus: CCHF



The important breakthrough to deal with this terrible virus: CCHF.  Scientists have made an important breakthrough to deal with this terrible virus: CCHF.

In February 2018, the official website of the World Health Organization (WHO) announced 10 high-risk infectious diseases, because they may cause great harm to human life and health if they break out.

These 10 high-risk diseases are:

  • Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF),
  • Ebola Virus
  • Marburgvirus,
  • Lassa fever,
  • Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus ( MERS-CoV infection),
  • Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS),
  • Nipah virus (Nipah virus),
  • Rift Valley Fever (RVF),
  • Zika virus (Zika)
  • Disease X (DiseaseX).

This list is an important part of WHO’s “Blueprint for Action on Research and Development of Infectious Diseases”.

It is intended to improve the ability of countries to respond to large-scale outbreaks of deadly infectious diseases around the world, and to strengthen the research and development of medical countermeasures and medicines and vaccines at all levels. 

Recently, a group of scientists are using the same methods they recently used to develop effective vaccine candidates against COVID-19 and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) against another virus: tick-borne Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever. (CCHF).

It causes deaths in 40% of cases, and the World Health Organization lists the disease as one of its top R&D tasks.

The research results were published in an article titled ” Structural basis of synergistic neutralization of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus by human antibodies ” in today’s “Science” magazine :

The important breakthrough to deal with this terrible virus: CCHF

A research team called Prometheus used what scientists call structural virology to reconstruct the three-dimensional atomic-scale map or structure of the infected part of the virus for the first time so that it can infect host cells.

The team also identified two neutralizing antibodies extracted from recovered patients .

These antibodies have the ability to destroy virus-infected cells. Together with structural information, they provide insights for the development of antiviral treatments.

The research echoes a key method used by scientists at the University of Texas at Austin in recent years to combat COVID-19 and RSV, which marks the prominent position of structural virology in preventing epidemics and controlling infectious diseases. Use fine and detailed imaging of virus components to discover their weaknesses .

Professor of molecular biology co-corresponding author of the study and scientific McLellan said: “Crimean – Congo hemorrhagic fever is a terrible disease, in Africa, Asia and Europe popular, so far there is no approved vaccine or antibody therapeutics, by structure In virology, we have discovered the secrets and weaknesses of these proteins on the surface of the virus, which will help us develop better treatments and vaccines .”

The important breakthrough to deal with this terrible virus: CCHF

Under the guidance of Kartik Chandran , professor of microbiology and immunology at the Einstein College of Medicine , the Prometheus team was composed of McLellan and other academic laboratories, biotechnology companies, and the US Army Institute of Infectious Disease Medicine.

The alliance previously discovered two antibodies that can effectively neutralize the virus from recovered CCHF patients.

Then, they combined the virus-binding regions of these two antibodies to produce a “bispecific antibody” that cleared the infection of diseased mice and protected uninfected mice from CCHF virus infection.

They are now working to develop a more stable version that can be tested in human clinical trials.

Akaash Mishra , a graduate student in the McClellan Lab at the University of Texas at Austin and the first author of the paper, said: “For example, a researcher, health care worker or military from the United States needs to visit the Middle East or Africa, and before they leave Before, they could inject one of these antibodies to prevent infection.

This is called passive immunity, which can protect them from weeks to months.”

Bispecific antibodies can also help patients who have been infected with CCHF recover from the infection and prevent death .

The insights from this research can also be used in the development of future vaccines. The CCHF virus relies on a deformable molecule called Gc protein on its surface to fuse with host cells. In order to effectively prevent viruses from infecting cells, a therapeutic agent needs to target the shape of the protein before fusion.

McClellan’s laboratory uses x-ray crystallography to determine the structure of the pre-fusion Gc protein that binds to the neutralizing antibody of the recovered patient. At the same time, Félix Rey ‘s laboratory at the Pasteur Institute determined the shape after fusion.

By studying the shape before and after fusion, as well as the position where various antibodies bind, the researchers determined that one antibody prevents the Gc protein from turning into the fused shape, and the other antibody prevents it from inserting part of itself into the host cell membrane .

This helps explain why the combination of these two antibodies is so effective in preventing the virus from infecting cells. CCHF is mainly transmitted through ticks.

Infectious disease experts warned that the threat of the virus may increase due to climate change and other factors that cause the ticks that it transmits to be found in more places.

Mishra said: “Before the COVID-19 outbreak, not many people had heard of the coronavirus. I think we need to be better prepared for this emerging virus, which may not cause an epidemic in the United States at this time. Disease, but there is still a great possibility that it will break out someday in the future.”

The important breakthrough to deal with this terrible virus: CCHF

(source:internet, reference only)


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