Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Decoding dengue: New pathway taken by virus discovered

Date:
July 16, 2014
Source:
Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore
Summary:
A new pathway the dengue virus takes to suppress the human immune system has been discovered by researchers. This new knowledge deepens our understanding of the virus and could contribute to the development of more effective therapeutics.

Scientists have discovered a new pathway the dengue virus takes to suppress the human immune system. This new knowledge deepens our understanding of the virus and could contribute to the development of more effective therapeutics.

Dengue is a significant health problem, a fact that is especially true for Singapore where there were over 20,000 dengue cases in 2013 and 10,000 cases this year so far. For years, the conventional approach to target the dengue virus was through vector control, which was regarded to be the most effective method. This is because the mechanics of the virus have been elusive, which in turn hampered the development of effective treatments and vaccines.

Fortunately a new study, published in the journal PLOS Pathogens, has given us fresh insight into the virus. Researchers from the Program in Emerging Infectious Diseases (EID) at Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore (Duke-NUS) have discovered a new way that dengue virus-2 (DENV-2) uses to evade the human defense system. Typically, when a virus enters the body and infects cells, it induces the production and release of interferons (IFNs), which are proteins that raise the bodies' anti-viral defense mechanisms.

The dengue virus enters the cell and produces large quantities of a non-coding, highly-structured viral RNA termed sfRNA, which is part of the genetic material of the dengue virus. The team found that sfRNA attaches itself to G3BP1, G3BP2 and CAPRIN1, proteins in the cell that typically help in producing antiviral proteins in response to IFNs. Because of this interaction, the cell is unable to mount its antiviral defenses and protect itself against virus replication.

"These findings were surprising because in 30 years of RNA and dengue related research this new mechanism was never discovered," explained senior author Professor Mariano Garcia-Blanco from EID.

"We not only found a new way in which the pathogen (dengue virus) interferes with the host response (human immune system) we also uncovered the first mechanistic insight into how this non-coding RNA works. This discovery opens the door to explore therapeutics through this channel."

These findings highlight new steps that regulate our immune response, and in the case of dengue, how the virus has learnt how to avoid these defenses. It also highlights the differences between the four dengue strains and how more research is needed to understand this highly complex virus.

"The dengue virus employs multiple strategies to evade our immune responses. These strategies provide the virus with redundancies so that if one approach fails, it has others to provide it with the necessary means to thrive," commented Associate Professor Eng Eong Ooi, Deputy Director of EID.

"Prof. Garcia-Blanco's lab describes a novel way in which dengue virus is able to avoid being killed by our antiviral response. It produces fragments of its own genome to act like a sponge to soak up those factors needed to produce the virus killing machinery. This work is an important contribution to our overall understanding of the evasive strategies employed by dengue virus, which is important for devising new and effective methods for treating dengue patients."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Katell Bidet, Dhivya Dadlani, Mariano A. Garcia-Blanco. G3BP1, G3BP2 and CAPRIN1 Are Required for Translation of Interferon Stimulated mRNAs and Are Targeted by a Dengue Virus Non-coding RNA. PLoS Pathogens, 2014; 10 (7): e1004242 DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1004242

Cite This Page:

Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore. "Decoding dengue: New pathway taken by virus discovered." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 July 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140716095825.htm>.
Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore. (2014, July 16). Decoding dengue: New pathway taken by virus discovered. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140716095825.htm
Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore. "Decoding dengue: New pathway taken by virus discovered." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140716095825.htm (accessed September 23, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Ice Age Wooly Mammoth Remains for Sale

Raw: Ice Age Wooly Mammoth Remains for Sale

AP (Sep. 23, 2014) A rare, well-preserved skeleton of a woolly mammoth is going on sale at Summers Place Auctions hope the 11.5-foot tall, almost intact specimen will fetch between $245,000 to $409,000. (Sept. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Fox Bites Conn. Student And School Staffers In Rare Attack

Fox Bites Conn. Student And School Staffers In Rare Attack

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) A fox attacked a second-grade boy at a Connecticut elementary school Monday. It also attacked two school staff members and a woman and her dog. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Will Living Glue Be A Thing?

Will Living Glue Be A Thing?

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) Using proteins derived from mussels, engineers at MIT have made a supersticky underwater adhesive. They're now looking to make "living glue." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Tiger Kills Man at India Zoo

Raw: Tiger Kills Man at India Zoo

AP (Sep. 23, 2014) A white tiger killed a young man who climbed over a fence at the New Delhi zoo and jumped into the animal's enclosure on Tuesday, a spokesman said. (Sept. 23) 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

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