Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Hepatitis C: Identification Of A Protein That Inhibits The Virus

Date:
April 17, 2008
Source:
CNRS
Summary:
Scientists have provided evidence of a protein that inhibits the hepatitis C virus at an early stage of its infective cycle. This research suggests possible new perspectives for the development of therapies to block the virus before it enters a cell. Hepatitis C is a major public health problem that affects some 130 million people throughout the world.

The EWI-2wint protein is not present in hepatocytes (liver cells). When it comes into contact with the hepatocyte, the hepatitis C virus can thus bind to the CD81 protein, which will allow it to enter the cell and pursue its infective cycle. In other types of cells in the body, the EWI-2wint protein is present and interacts with CD81, thus preventing the hepatitis C virus from entering these cells.
Credit: Copyright CNRS 2008 Sophana Ung

Scientists in the Laboratoire Hépatite C of the Institut de Biologie de Lille  in collaboration with INSERM Unit 602 and a laboratory at Stanford University have provided evidence of a protein, called EWI-2wint,  that inhibits the hepatitis C virus at an early stage of its infective cycle. This research suggests possible new perspectives for the development of therapies to block the virus before it enters a cell.

Hepatitis C is a major public health problem that affects some 130 million people throughout the world. In France , where there are about 5000 new cases each year, it is estimated that half a million people could be affected by this disease. The causal agent is the hepatitis C virus (HCV) which targets cells in the liver called hepatocytes. HCV infection is usually chronic (60% to 80% of cases) and in the long term can lead to the development of cirrhosis and liver cancer.

Unlike the hepatitis A and B viruses, there is no vaccine to combat this virus. Furthermore, the treatments employed are only of limited efficacy (the failure rate reaches around 40%), and they involve considerable side effects. It is therefore crucial to develop new antiviral compounds to control this infection.

HCV uses at least three receptors to enter and infect a hepatocyte.  One of these receptors is the CD81 protein, which has the particular characteristic of associating with numerous other proteins. It was by studying these CD81 partner proteins that the researchers identified the EWI-2wint protein, which prevents the recognition of CD81 by the hepatitis C virus and inhibits it at a very early stage in its infective cycle. This protein is present in other types of cells, which could explain why they are not infected by HCV. Discovery of the role of EWI-2wint in hepatocytes has demonstrated the complexity of the mechanisms of entry of HCV into its target cells, and opens the way to new therapeutic approaches.

Journal reference: The CD81 partner EWI-2wint inhibits hepatitis C virus entry. Vera Rocha-Perugini, Claire Montpellier, David Delgrange, Czeslaw Wychowski, François Helle, André Pillez, Hervé Drobecq, François Le Naour, Stéphanie Charrin, Shoshana Levy, Eric Rubinstein, Jean Dubuisson, Laurence Cocquerel. PLoS One. April 2, 2008.

This research was supported by the ANRS.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by CNRS. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

CNRS. "Hepatitis C: Identification Of A Protein That Inhibits The Virus." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 April 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080414213816.htm>.
CNRS. (2008, April 17). Hepatitis C: Identification Of A Protein That Inhibits The Virus. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080414213816.htm
CNRS. "Hepatitis C: Identification Of A Protein That Inhibits The Virus." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080414213816.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) — New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com
$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

Newsy (July 20, 2014) — Cynthia Robinson claims R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company hid the health and addiction risks of its products, leading to the death of her husband in 1996. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Newsy (July 19, 2014) — Research on plaque from ancient teeth shows that our prehistoric ancestor's had a detailed understanding of plants long before developing agriculture. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

AFP (July 18, 2014) — Contaminated water in South Africa's northwestern town of Bloemhof kills three babies and hospitalises over 500 people. The incident highlights growing fears over water safety in South Africa. Duration: 02:22 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins