Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Step forward in foot-and-mouth disease understanding

Date:
December 9, 2011
Source:
University of Leeds
Summary:
Scientists have discovered a mechanism they believe may play a key role in the spread of foot-and-mouth disease in animals.

Scientists have discovered a mechanism they believe may play a key role in the spread of foot-and-mouth disease in animals.

Researchers at the University of Leeds have been studying an enzyme -- called 3D -- which plays a vital role in the replication of the virus behind the disease. They have found that this enzyme forms fibrous structures (or fibrils) during the replication process. What's more, they have found a molecule which can prevent these fibrils forming.

The project was funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and its findings have been published by the Journal of Virology. "It's too much of a jump to say that we've found a potential drug target for treatment of foot-and-mouth disease because there's still such a lot we don't know," says Dr Nicola Stonehouse of the University of Leeds' Faculty of Biological Sciences. "However, we do think these findings are significant and provide us with a new avenue for exploration." Foot-and-mouth is a one of the most readily transmissible diseases known to man, but the mechanisms by which it infects animals are not well understood.

The virus responsible for the disease is able to reproduce very quickly, enabling it to cause widespread devastation in a short space of time. The 2001 outbreak in the UK resulted in the deaths of around seven million sheep and cattle at an extremely high cost to the British agricultural sector. Another, more contained outbreak, occurred in 2007. In laboratory experiments, the research team were able to see that the 3D enzyme forms fibrils when it is copying genetic information it requires to replicate. The implications of these fibrils are not yet fully understood, but it is thought they may play an important role in the reproduction process. If this is the case, having already found a molecule to block the fibril formation could be significant. "The next stage of our research will be to investigate these fibrils further, to look at their structure and purpose," says PhD student Kris Holmes, who has been working on the project.

Because FMD is classed as a dangerous pathogen, only one laboratory in the UK -- the Institute for Animal Health at Pirbright, in Surrey -- is licensed to work with the actual virus. In this research, the Leeds team used a simple, non-harmful model of the virus.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Matthew Bentham, Kris Holmes, Sophie Forrest, David J. Rowlands and Nicola J. Stonehouse. Formation of higher-order FMDV 3D complexes is dependent on elongation activity. Journal of Virology, 2011 DOI: 10.1128/%u200BJVI.05696-11

Cite This Page:

University of Leeds. "Step forward in foot-and-mouth disease understanding." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 December 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111209105655.htm>.
University of Leeds. (2011, December 9). Step forward in foot-and-mouth disease understanding. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111209105655.htm
University of Leeds. "Step forward in foot-and-mouth disease understanding." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111209105655.htm (accessed April 23, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India

Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India

AP (Apr. 22, 2014) A leopard caused panic in the city of Chandrapur on Monday when it sprung from the roof of a house and charged at rescue workers. (April 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Iowa College Finds Beauty in Bulldogs

Iowa College Finds Beauty in Bulldogs

AP (Apr. 22, 2014) Drake University hosts 35th annual Beautiful Bulldog Contest. (April 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
805-Pound Shark Caught Off The Coast Of Florida

805-Pound Shark Caught Off The Coast Of Florida

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) One Florida fisherman caught a 805-pound shark off the coast of Florida earlier this month. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier

AP (Apr. 21, 2014) Breakfast is now being served with a side of sticker shock. The cost of morning staples like bacon, coffee and orange juice is on the rise because of global supply problems. (April 21) Video provided by AP
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