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Edinburgh University Discovery

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New method of targeting herpes virus could lead to cure/treatment breakthrough.

Back in 2006, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania worked out part of the reason herpes sores have a nasty habit of coming back time and time again. Professor Nigel Fraser and his team discovered as long ago as 1984 that herpes was different than most other infections when they discovered a latency-associated transcript gene (LAT) in the HSV-1 herpes virus.

In simple terms, this means that although drugs like acyclovir can treat the symptoms of herpes, they can’t get to the nub of the problem because the LAT gene won’t allow the cell causing the problem to die.

That discovery, nearly thirty years ago, led the team to hypothesize that the LAT gene produced a molecule known as Micro RNA (MiRNA) whose effect was to prevent anything from reaching and killing the infected cells.

So Fraser and his colleagues concluded in 2006 that finding a MiRNA that interacts with the cellular pathway during latency could offer the first treatment against latency itself and thus a profoundly different method of treatment.

Fast forward four years to research by a team at the Edinburgh University (UK) who have found a way to manipulate MiRNA levels enabling them to control a network of proteins and prevent viruses from growing. Research centered around herpes viruses as well as the Semliki Forest virus, mainly spread by mosquito bites. The viruses behave in different ways, with the herpes family of viruses multiplying inside nuclei of cells and the Semliki Forest virus multiplying outside.

But by making the site of infection in either case less hospitable to viruses, the viruses become less able to mutate and make drug treatment more effective. Tackling the viruses in this manner also meant that the team was able to tackle more than one virus simultaneously.

Dr Amy Buck of Edinburgh University’s Centre for Immunity, Infection and Evolution explained: “New viral strains emerge frequently and many infections are difficult to diagnose and treat. It is important to find new ways of targeting infection. Our hope is that we will be able to use host-directed therapies to supplement the natural immune response and disable viruses by taking away what they need to survive.”


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Cure Coming Soon


Thanks for posting this. I haven't heard of the research until now.

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Can´t read anything on the link. The discover this 2006? If you talked with the DR is i possible to do that again? Mayby some news and closer to an cure?

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    • Rockster
      Thanks Wilson! [mistaken posti don't get how i can delete it again, sorry]
    • Rockster
      (For my case: i am not diagnosed herpes. I had genital warts. 
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    • Voyager2
      I THINK this will benefit us. If the FDA allows more aggressive research in the deadliest virus programs, such as HIV gene editing, then off-targeting and other safety issues might already be solved before Dr. Jerome  starts editing hsv in humans.

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