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Human Dengue Virus Antibodies Protect Mice and Unborn Pups from Zika Virus

저자:   업로드:2017-09-26  조회수:

    Scientists have discovered that antibodies taken from patients infected with Dengue virus are effective in treating Zika infection in rodents.

    The team, led by researchers at Imperial College London and Washington University in St Louis, found that giving Zika-infected mice the antibodies was enough to treat the early stages of infection, and even protected unborn pups in pregnant animals.

    According to the researchers, if the findings can be replicated in humans, the discovery could potentially lead to a single therapy to protect against both viral threats.

    The findings build on previous work‡ by the group, which looked at blood samples from patients in South East Asia infected with Dengue virus, discovering they produced antibodies which were highly effective against the virus. These Y-shaped proteins, which recognise the virus and stick to its surface, single out Dengue for destruction by the body's immune cells.

    Last year, the group discovered that this same class of antibodies also recognised a close cousin of Dengue, the Zika virus.

    Now, in a study published in the journal Nature Immunology, they have shown for the first time that these antibodies are effective in treating Zika infection in mice.

    Dengue is found in multiple regions around the world, including the Pacific, South America, Africa and South East Asia. The virus, of which there are four types, is spread by mosquitoes and can lead to Dengue haemorrhagic fever, a complication which can lead to shock and eventually death if untreated.

    Zika is from the same family of viruses (called Flaviviridae) as Dengue, occurs in many of the same regions and is transmitted by the same species of mosquito. Recent Zika outbreaks in South and Central America have been associated with deformities in newborns as well as Guillain-Barré syndrome, a rare but debilitating condition affecting the nerves.

    Professor Gavin Screaton, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at Imperial and senior author, said: "This paper shows for the first time that antibodies we had previously found to be effective against Dengue potently protect against Zika virus in mice and can treat the early stages of infection."

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