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BREAKING NEWS: EDITORS’ PICKS
New analysis of the influenza A virus shows potential for developing new anti-viral drugs which are more likely to be universally effective against the flu virus originating from avian, swine or human virus strains.
Around 1 in 5 of the population were infected in both recent outbreaks of seasonal flu and the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic, but just 23% of these infections caused symptoms, and only 17% of people were ill enough to consult their doctor.
One person having a rare combination of both lupus and HIV, has the unique ability to fight HIV. This provided key insights into an immune response that researchers now hope to trigger with a vaccine, according to new findings.
The immune cells of 12 HIV positive patients have been successfully genetically engineered by researchers to resist infection, and decrease the viral loads of some patients taken off antiretroviral drug therapy (ADT) entirely -— including one patient whose levels became undetectable. This it the first published report of any gene editing approach in humans.
A KwaZulu-Natal woman’s body responded to her HIV infection by making potent antibodies (called broadly neutralizing antibodies, because they are able to kill multiple strains of HIV from across the world). Researchers identified these antibodies in her blood and then duplicated them by cloning the antibodies in the laboratory. The cloned antibodies were then used in a series of experiments in the laboratory to elucidate the pathway followed by her immune system to make these potent antibodies.
The antibiotics, called spectinamides, were created by changing the chemical structure of an existing antibiotic, spectinomycin, which does not work against TB.