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New research offers hope for vaccine, therapies for deadly infections

Date:
December 20, 2013
Source:
Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center (LA BioMed)
Summary:
In a finding that could lead to the development of a vaccine and therapies for mucormycosis, a research team reported that they can prevent human cell invasion and successfully treat mucormycosis in disease models using antibodies that block the CotH protein.

Mucormycosis is a deadly infection that strikes people with weakened immune systems when certain types of fungi, called Mucorales, invade the patients' cells. A novel protein on the surface of the Mucorales cells, called CotH, makes this invasion possible.

In a finding that could lead to the development of a vaccine and therapies for mucormycosis, a research team at Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute (LA BioMed) reported in an online, ahead-of-print study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation that they can prevent human cell invasion and successfully treat mucormycosis in disease models using antibodies that block the CotH protein.

"There are no vaccines or effective therapies available today to halt the highly fatal mucormycosis infection, and there is an urgent need for these strategies to protect patients with weakened immune systems," said Ashraf S. Ibrahim, PhD, an LA BioMed lead researcher and corresponding author for the study. "Our research lays the groundwork for developing the antibodies to prevent and treat mucormycosis in high-risk patients. These findings also could lead to diagnostic tests for the disease."

Patients with weakened immune systems, malnutrition or acidosis (hyperglycemia or diabetic ketoacidosis) are at increased risk of infection. Dr Ibrahim's group found treatment with anti-CotH antibodies or CotH-targeted RNAi blocked the cell invasion and protected against mucormycosis.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center (LA BioMed). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Teclegiorgis Gebremariam, Mingfu Liu, Guanpingsheng Luo, Vincent Bruno, Quynh T. Phan, Alan J. Waring, John E. Edwards, Scott G. Filler, Michael R. Yeaman, Ashraf S. Ibrahim. CotH3 mediates fungal invasion of host cells during mucormycosis. Journal of Clinical Investigation, 2013; DOI: 10.1172/JCI71349

Cite This Page:

Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center (LA BioMed). "New research offers hope for vaccine, therapies for deadly infections." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 December 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131220143228.htm>.
Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center (LA BioMed). (2013, December 20). New research offers hope for vaccine, therapies for deadly infections. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131220143228.htm
Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center (LA BioMed). "New research offers hope for vaccine, therapies for deadly infections." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131220143228.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

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