Monday, April 17, 2017

Understanding of herpesvirus infection advanced by new research

The herpe virus can last a lifetime. Once a person is infected, the virus can remain in someones system for years before reactivating to cause the disease to show up. National Institutes of Health (NIH) scientists have identified a set of protein complexes that are recruited to viral genes and stimulate both initial infection and reactivation from latency. Environmental stresses known to regulate these proteins also induce reactivation. The World Health Organization estimates that one-half billion people are infected with HSV-2 while two-thirds of the population are infected with HSV-1. This virus can cause a range from oral cold sores to genital lesions to serious eye conditions that can lead to blindness. In infants, HSV can cause neurological and developmental problems. Scientists found they could reactivate latent HSV in a mouse model using compounds that turn on components of these HCF-1 protein complexes. The scientists are still continuing their work  to investigate the protein complexes involved in promoting HSV gene expression. Once they do more work, it could lead to new therapeutics that can help people that live with this virus. 
Original article here
More information on the gene

1 comment:

  1. Proteins are by far one of the most complex organelles out there! This is very interesting that the virus can reactivate and reappear years later. This is very interesting to someone who is interested in microbiology. Great article and usage of words.