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Hepatitis B virus assembly mechanism is cracked, new therapies may be found

2017-06-21 来源:亚科官网
21 June 2017

  Researchers from University of York and University of Leeds have published research results at International journal “Nature Microbiology”, explaining the working mechanism of hepatitis B virus, which may provide new hope for developing new therapies for the treatment of hepatitis B.

乙肝病毒组装机制

  Viral hepatitis is now seen as a major public health challenge, according to WHO's new data, there are about 325 million people worldwide infected with chronic hepatitis B virus or hepatitis C virus. The vast majority of these infected people can not get life-saving detection and treatment. As a result, millions of people are at risk of developing chronic liver disease, cancer and death. Hepatitis B vaccine can protect the body against viral infection, but once infected with the virus, patients can not be cured. At present, hepatitis B antiviral therapy is the core content of hepatitis B treatment, recognized hepatitis B antiviral drugs are divided into two categories, namely, interferon class (common interferon α-2b, pegylated interferon α-2a ) and nucleosides (lamivudine, adefovir, entecavir). Although these drugs can alleviate the symptoms of patients, but can not change the patient's long-term situation.
 
  The formation of Hepatitis B virus nucleocapsid is an essential step in the virus life cycle, but its assembly has not yet been completely cracked. In the study, the researchers found the interaction between the RNA signal of the hepatitis B virus and the viral protein: a special assembly code was identified from the genetic material of the hepatitis B virus to help the virus produce a protective cover, resulting in more infectious virus particles; virus protein can be attracted by the RNA signal, assembled into a precise molecular machine, thereby promoting the virus to produce genetic material copy, and enhance the infectivity of the virus.
 
  After clarification of the molecular mechanism of virus assembly, scientists can use the interaction mechanism between the virus protein and RNA signal to find the drugs that can interrupt the link between RNA and viral protein, thus effectively inhibit the virus replication. Researchers are working with scientists at National Institutes of Health to identify potential candidates, hope that they will be able to cure patients who have been infected with hepatitis B.
 
Related links: Adefovir intermediates
                       Research Progress of Hepatitis B in 2016
 

Edited by Suzhou Yacoo Science Co., Ltd.