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Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca
Virus and bioinformatics articles with some microbiology and immunology thrown in for good measure
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A newly discovered mechanism controls the number of immune cells - EurekAlert (press release)

A newly discovered mechanism controls the number of immune cells - EurekAlert (press release) | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
The proteins CD47 and SIRPα are fundamental to establishing a correct number of immune cells, so-called B lymphocytes. This according to a dissertation by Shrikant Shantilal Kolan from Umeå University in Sweden.

Via Gilbert Faure au nom de l'ASSIM
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Gilbert Faure au nom de l'ASSIM's curator insight, October 1, 2015 4:30 AM

In the human body, B lymphocytes are maintained in large numbers - around 100 billion. However, defects in the development of B lymphocytes, or in their function, may lead to blood cancers or immune-deficiencies.

Shrikant Shantilal Kolan has in his dissertation investigated new mechanisms involved in regulating B lymphocyte development and maturation. The dissertation shows that two cell surface proteins, CD47 and SIRPα, are each important to develop normal numbers of B lymphocytes. Although the exact details remain to be understood, these two proteins may be important to prevent death of developing B lymphocytes and to promote the long-term survival of the vast majority of all B lymphocytes.

The proteins CD47 and SIRPα were also found to have the opposite effect on a smaller subset of B lymphocytes, the so called marginal zone (MZ) B lymphocytes of the spleen. For this B lymphocyte subset, CD47 and SIRPα were found to be required to prevent an abnormal accumulation of these cells with an increasing age.

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Efficacy and Longer-Term Safety of the Dengue Vaccine in Endemic Regions

Efficacy and Longer-Term Safety of the Dengue Vaccine in Endemic Regions | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
Now@NEJM blog: Efficacy and Longer-Term Safety of the Dengue Vaccine in Endemic Regions. http://t.co/NaE0vjpdS6 http://t.co/DeGX8MQFrX
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A phylogenomic data-driven exploration of viral origins and evolution

A phylogenomic data-driven exploration of viral origins and evolution | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it

-- What do you think?

 

"Despite the extremely reduced nature of viral proteomes, we established an ancient origin of the “viral supergroup” and the existence of widespread episodes of horizontal transfer of genetic information. ... 


... Phylogenomic analysis uncovered a universal tree of life and revealed that modern viruses reduced from multiple ancient cells that harbored segmented RNA genomes and coexisted with the ancestors of modern cells. The model for the origin and evolution of viruses and cells is backed by strong genomic and structural evidence and can be reconciled with existing models of viral evolution if one considers viruses to have originated from ancient cells and not from modern counterparts." 

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Declining Student Resilience: A Serious Problem for Colleges

College personnel everywhere are struggling with students' increased neediness.
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Bye-bye, HPV: New vaccine clears lesions in clinical trial

Bye-bye, HPV: New vaccine clears lesions in clinical trial | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
A new vaccine is looking promising as a nonsurgical treatment for existing precancerous and cancerous cervical lesions.

Via Ed Rybicki
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Ed Rybicki's curator insight, September 21, 2015 4:47 PM

Met some folk from the company today - great news, we look forward to hearing more!

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New clues on the history of the smallpox vaccine virus

New clues on the history of the smallpox vaccine virus | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it

Given the fear that the variola virus could be reintroduced to humans in weaponized form, new generations of smallpox vaccines are highly needed. A new study provides fresh insights on the relationship among the vaccinia strains used to eradicate smallpox in the world and indicates that differently than previously thought, the Dryvax virus that led to the second-generation of smallpox vaccine in the USA is closely related to the Brazilian strain and might as well have come from the French and not the English strain, as previously thought.

 

Poxvirus picture from Russell Kightley Media


Via Ed Rybicki
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Possible JC Virus Vaccination Offers Important Implications for MS Treatment

Possible JC Virus Vaccination Offers Important Implications for MS Treatment | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
Read about the possibility of a vaccine against the JC virus and its implications for MS treatment.

Via Ed Rybicki
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Circulating cell free DNA in pregnancy and cancer

Circulating cell free DNA in pregnancy and cancer | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
Improved understanding of plasma DNA is opening up new possibilities for non-invasive testing and diagnosis In the last few years, scientists hav...
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Exposure to Bovine Leukemia Virus Is Associated with Breast Cancer

Exposure to Bovine Leukemia Virus Is Associated with Breast Cancer | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
Background

Age, reproductive history, hormones, genetics, and lifestyle are known risk factors for breast cancer, but the agents that initiate cellular changes from normal to malignant are not understood. We previously detected bovine leukemia virus (BLV), a common oncogenic virus of cattle, in the breast epithelium of humans. The objective of this study was to determine whether the presence of BLV DNA in human mammary epithelium is associated with breast cancer.

 

Methods

This was a case-control study of archival formalin fixed paraffin embedded breast tissues from 239 donors, received 2002–2008 from the Cooperative Human Tissue Network. Case definition as breast cancer versus normal (women with no history of breast cancer) was established through medical records and examination of tissues by an anatomical pathologist. Breast exposure to BLV was determined by in situ-PCR detection of a biomarker, BLV DNA, localized within mammary epithelium.

Results

The frequency of BLV DNA in mammary epithelium from women with breast cancer (59%) was significantly higher than in normal controls (29%) (multiply- adjusted odds ratio = 3.07, confidence interval = 1.66–5.69, p = .0004, attributable risk = 37%). In women with premalignant breast changes the frequency of BLV DNA was intermediate (38%) between that of women with breast cancer and normal controls (p for trend < .001).

Conclusions

Among the specimens in this study, the presence of amplified BLV DNA was significantly associated with breast cancer. The odds ratio magnitude was comparable to those of well-established breast cancer risk factors related to reproductive history, hormones, and lifestyle and was exceeded only by risk factors related to genetics (familial breast cancer), high dose ionizing radiation, and age. These findings have the potential for primary and secondary prevention of breast cancer.

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Scientists discover new system for human genome editing: Game-changing technology could disrupt both scientific, commercial landscape -- ScienceDaily

Scientists discover new system for human genome editing: Game-changing technology could disrupt both scientific, commercial landscape -- ScienceDaily | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
A team including the scientist who first harnessed the revolutionary CRISPR-Cas9 system for mammalian genome editing has now identified a different CRISPR system with the potential for even simpler and more precise genome engineering.
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Kenzibit's curator insight, September 28, 2015 1:08 AM

Keeps getting better doesn't it?

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Genomics, Medicine, and Pseudoscience: Donald Trump shows his anti-vaccine craziness, and Ben Carson's response is worse

Genomics, Medicine, and Pseudoscience: Donald Trump shows his anti-vaccine craziness, and Ben Carson's response is worse | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
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DART protein shows potential as shock-and-kill strategy against HIV

DART protein shows potential as shock-and-kill strategy against HIV | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
A unique molecule developed at Duke Medicine, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and MacroGenics, Inc., is able to bind HIV-infected cells to the immune system's killer T cells. It could become a key part of a shock-and-kill strategy being developed in the hope of one day clearing HIV infection.
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T Cell Inactivation by Poxviral B22 Family Proteins Increases Viral Virulence

T Cell Inactivation by Poxviral B22 Family Proteins Increases Viral Virulence | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it

B22 gene encodes the largest poxvirus protein. Previously unknown in functions, now revealed to take part in T-Cell inactivation to increase viral virulence!

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New drugs reawaken latent HIV to eradicate virus

New drugs reawaken latent HIV to eradicate virus | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
In a new study, researchers reveal how they used a class of drugs called Smac mimetics to reawaken and destroy latent HIV, opening the door to a cure for the virus.

Via Ed Rybicki
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Cowpox after a cat scratch - case report from Poland. - PubMed - NCBI

Cowpox after a cat scratch - case report from Poland. - PubMed - NCBI | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it

Cowpox in humans is a rare zoonotic disease; its recognition is therefore problematic due to the lack of clinical experience. The differential diagnosis includes other poxvirus infections and also infections with herpesviruses or selected bacteria. The clinical course can be complicated and the improvement may take weeks. Late diagnosis is one of the causes of unnecessary combined antibiotic therapy or surgical intervention. A case of cowpox after a cat scratch in a 15-year-old girl is presented, with a summary of the available clinical data on cowpox infections.

 
 
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Newly discovered insect virus could combat invasive ants

Newly discovered insect virus could combat invasive ants | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it

Like colonial Europeans carrying smallpox to the Americas, the tiny brown Argentine ant may be harboring a dangerous virus that’s killing the world’s already vulnerable honey bees. That’s the conclusion of a new study, which also finds that the ants have their own disease to worry about—one that scientists could target to limit the spread of this invasive species.

 

Via Ed Rybicki
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Influenza virus–host interactomes as a basis for antiviral drug development

Influenza virus–host interactomes as a basis for antiviral drug development | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
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Antigenic Patterns and Evolution of the Human Influenza A (H1N1) Virus : Scientific Reports

Antigenic Patterns and Evolution of the Human Influenza A (H1N1) Virus : Scientific Reports | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
Scientific Reports is an online, open access journal from the publishers of Nature. The 2014 Impact Factor for Scientific Reports is 5.578.
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Genomic analysis, phenotype, and virulence of the historical Brazilian smallpox vaccine strain IOC: Implications for the origins and evolutionary relationships of vaccinia virus

Phylogenetic inference supported by the structural analysis of the genome ends provide evidence of a novel, independent cluster in VACV phylogeny formed by VACV-IOC, the Brazilian field strains Cantagalo (CTGV) and Serro 2 viruses, and horsepox virus, a VACV-like virus supposedly related to an ancestor of the VACV lineage. Our data strongly support the hypothesis that CTGV-like viruses represent feral VACV that evolved in parallel with VACV-IOC after splitting from a most recent common ancestor, probably an ancient smallpox vaccine strain related to horsepox virus. Our data, together with an interesting historical investigation, revisit the origins of VACV and propose new evolutionary relationships between ancient and extant VACV strains, mainly horsepox virus, VACV-IOC/CTGV-like viruses, and Dryvax strain.

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PaVE: Papilloma virus genome database

PaVE: Papilloma virus genome database | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
Searchable database of papilloma genomes with visualization and analysis tools.
Ed Rybicki's insight:

GREAT resource - really well set up.

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Recombination in viruses: mechanisms, methods of study, and evolutionary consequences. - PubMed - NCBI

Infect Genet Evol. 2015 Mar;30:296-307. doi: 10.1016/j.meegid.2014.12.022. Epub 2014 Dec 23. Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Review
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HIV may kill most cells by a method overlooked for years

HIV may kill most cells by a method overlooked for years | Virology and Bioinformatics from Virology.ca | Scoop.it
Viruses pumped directly into cells may kill the most crucial white blood cells in people with HIV, which could make developing a vaccine even harder
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