Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Drug to fight tumors also fights the flu and possibly other viruses

Date:
February 28, 2011
Source:
Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology
Summary:
Ever get a flu shot and still get the flu? If so, there's new hope for flu-free winters in the years to come thanks to a new discovery by researchers who found that a drug called DMXAA, originally developed as anti-tumor agent, enhances the ability of flu vaccines to ward off this deadly virus.

Ever get a flu shot and still get the flu? If so, there's new hope for flu-free winters in the years to come thanks to a new discovery by researchers who found that a drug called DMXAA, originally developed as anti-tumor agent, enhances the ability of flu vaccines to ward off this deadly virus. A new research report appearing in the March 2011 issue of the Journal of Leukocyte Biology suggests that DMXAA could assist flu vaccines by causing the body to produce its own antiviral proteins, called interferons, which interfere with the virus's ability to spread. In addition, DMXAA may be a useful antiviral therapy to treat newly emerging strains of the flu for which a vaccine has not be developed.

"We are hopeful that DMXAA or similar agents can be used ultimately to blunt the impact of yearly influenza outbreaks, and perhaps, for other virus infections as well," said Stefanie Vogel, Ph.D., co-author of the study and Professor of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Maryland, School of Medicine in Baltimore.

To make this discovery, Vogel and colleagues infected mice with a mouse-adapted influenza strain. When given DMXAA three hours before or after infection and then two days later, the infection was significantly less severe. In addition, they found that DMXAA protected cells from flu strains that are resistant to Tamiflu®, one of the most advanced anti-flu drugs on the market. These discoveries suggest that DMXAA could potentially enhance the efficacy of current flu treatments and vaccines, and perhaps treat other viruses or bacteria. To be sure that DMXAA led to increased production of interferons, the researchers also tested it in mice that lacked a gene needed to produce interferon, and found that these mice received no benefit from DMXAA.

"H1N1 was a wake-up call that the flu remains a very serious disease, regardless of how "common" we may think it is," said John Wherry, Ph.D., Deputy Editor of the Journal of Leukocyte Biology. "Every year this virus mutates, and history has shown us that new, very dangerous strains of this virus will continue to emerge. New drugs like this one that can combat this virus -- especially drugs that are effective against newly emerging strains -- may prove to be lifesaving for millions of people around the world."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. K. A. Shirey, Q. M. Nhu, K. C. Yim, Z. J. Roberts, J. R. Teijaro, D. L. Farber, J. C. Blanco, S. N. Vogel. The anti-tumor agent, 5,6-dimethylxanthenone-4-acetic acid (DMXAA), induces IFN- -mediated antiviral activity in vitro and in vivo. Journal of Leukocyte Biology, 2010; DOI: 10.1189/jlb.0410216

Cite This Page:

Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. "Drug to fight tumors also fights the flu and possibly other viruses." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 February 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110228104312.htm>.
Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. (2011, February 28). Drug to fight tumors also fights the flu and possibly other viruses. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110228104312.htm
Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. "Drug to fight tumors also fights the flu and possibly other viruses." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110228104312.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) — A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) — Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
West Africa Gripped by Deadly Ebola Outbreak

West Africa Gripped by Deadly Ebola Outbreak

AFP (July 28, 2014) — The worst-ever outbreak of the deadly Ebola epidemic grips west Africa, killing hundreds. Duration: 00:48 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Newsy (July 27, 2014) — A national study conducted by the USDA Forest Service found that trees collectively save more than 850 lives on an annual basis. Video provided by Newsy
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