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UN: Spread of polio now a world health emergency

UN: Spread of polio now a world health emergency | Virology News | Scoop.it

LONDON (AP) — 

The spread of polio around the world has become so serious it is now an international public health emergency, the World Health Organization warned today.

The agency said the problem could grow in the next few months and unravel the nearly three-decade effort to eradicate the crippling disease.

It described current polio outbreaks in Asia, Africa and the Middle East as an 'extraordinary event' that required a coordinated international response. It was the first-ever international alert on polio.

'Until it is eradicated, polio will continue to spread internationally, find and paralyze susceptible kids,' Dr Bruce Aylward, who leads WHO's polio efforts.

 

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Virology News
Topical news snippets about viruses that affect people.  And other things. Like zombies B-)
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Mysterious viral haemorrhagic fever outbreak in northern South Sudan

team from WHO's Regional Office for Africa is investigating a mysterious viral haemorrhagic fever outbreak in northern South Sudan that has killed 10 people. At the same time, national health officials are scrambling to put preventive measures in place based on the scant knowledge they have so far. However, in a country where nearly 2.5 years of fighting have left the health system in tatters, it is unclear how effective those efforts will be.

The outbreak was 1st reported to national health officials in March [2016], but John Rumunu, South Sudan's director general of preventive health services for the Ministry of Health, said it might have started as early as December 2015. The symptoms include unexplained bleeding, vomiting, and fever.
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Protein cages made in the lab resemble virus particles

Protein cages made in the lab resemble virus particles | Virology News | Scoop.it
Viruses store their genetic material inside a protein shell, known as a capsid, which sometimes has an icosahedral shape. Now, in a development that could go viral, chemists have learned how to create protein icosahedra that look just like the ones some viruses use. Potential applications of such caged structures include packaging biomolecules, drugs, and vaccines and delivering displayed antigens capable of eliciting disease-fighting antibodies.
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Some viruses could survive on children's toys for hours and cause infection, study finds

Certain viruses, such as influenza, could survive on children's toys long enough to result in exposures, placing children at risk for getting infectious diseases, according to researchers at Georgia State University.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
Children: almost as bad as cockroaches for spreading disease
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Dengue virus exposure may amplify Zika infection

Dengue virus exposure may amplify Zika infection | Virology News | Scoop.it
Previous exposure to the dengue virus may increase the potency of Zika infection, according to research from Imperial College London.

The early-stage laboratory findings, published in the journal Nature Immunology, suggests the recent explosive outbreak of Zika may have been driven in part by previous exposure to the dengue virus.
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Made-to-order icosahedral nanocages 

Researchers have designed and produced a self-assembling protein shell shaped like an icosahedron -- similar to those that encapsulate viruses. The achievement may open new avenues for engineering cargo-containing nano-cages to package and deliver drugs and vaccines directly into cells, or building small reactors to catalyze biochemical reactions. The shell is also amenable to genetic fusion, such as the addition of fluorescent proteins.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
Copying viruses...B-)
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This Viral DNA Infects Cells by Changing From a Solid to a Liquid

This Viral DNA Infects Cells by Changing From a Solid to a Liquid | Virology News | Scoop.it
Two new studies are showing that viral infections are possible owing to a remarkable biological phase transition. The research shows that viral DNA transforms from a glassy solid to a fluid-like state when the conditions for infection are just right. The new insight could result in new antiviral therapies.
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How a Flu Virus Invades a Cell

How a Flu Virus Invades a Cell | Virology News | Scoop.it
Researchers from the University of Washington are the first to visualize the insidious way that the flu virus latches onto a cell and plows its way inside, causing an infection.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
BEAUTIFUL EM! 
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Memory loss caused by West Nile virus explained

Thousands of West Nile virus survivors live with neurological problems such as memory loss that last for years. New research shows that these long-term problems may be due to the patient's own immune system destroying parts of their neurons, which suggests that intervening in the immune response may help prevent brain damage or help patients recover.
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Detection of chikungunya virus in saliva and urine


Background
Saliva and urine have been used for arthropod-borne viruses molecular detection but not yet for chikungunya virus (CHIKV). We investigated the use of saliva and urine for molecular detection of CHIKV during the French Polynesian outbreak.

Methods
During the French Polynesian chikungunya outbreak (2014–2015), we collected the same day blood and saliva samples from 60 patients with probable chikungunya (47 during the 1st week post symptoms onset and 13 after), urine was available for 39 of them. All samples were tested using a CHIKV reverse-transcription PCR.

Results
Forty eight patients had confirmed chikungunya. For confirmed chikungunya presenting during the 1st week post symptoms onset, CHIKV RNA was detected from 86.1 % (31/36) of blood, 58.3 % (21/36) of saliva and 8.3 % (2/24) of urine. Detection rate of CHIKV RNA was significantly higher in blood compared to saliva. For confirmed chikungunya presenting after the 1st week post symptoms onset, CHIKV RNA was detected from 8.3 % (1/12) of blood, 8.3 % (1/12) of saliva and 0 % (0/8) of urine.

Conclusions
In contrast to Zika virus (ZIKV), saliva did not increased the detection rate of CHIKV RNA during the 1st week post symptoms onset. In contrast to ZIKV, dengue virus and West Nile virus, urine did not enlarged the window of detection of CHIKV RNA after the 1st week post symptoms onset. Saliva can be used for molecular detection of CHIKV during the 1st week post symptoms onset only if blood is impossible to collect but with a lower sensitivity compared to blood.

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Lethal feral rabbit virus spreads in S Australia

Lethal feral rabbit virus spreads in S Australia | Virology News | Scoop.it
A virus that causes feral rabbits to hemorrhage to death has spread throughout South Australia's southeast and mid-north.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
...and lethal feral political virus spreads in USA...note to Australians: SA is South Africa. Or maybe Saudi Arabia, if you put K in front of it. Or even U S of A. But just SA was claimed by us long ago B-)
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Innovative computer HIV capsid model provides real insight into virus maturation process

Innovative computer HIV capsid model provides real insight into virus maturation process | Virology News | Scoop.it
From a virus's point of view, invading our cells is a matter of survival. The virus makes a living by highjacking cellular processes to produce more of the proteins that make it up.
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More West Nile virus-infected mosquitoes detected in San Jose

More West Nile virus-infected mosquitoes detected in San Jose | Virology News | Scoop.it
The Santa Clara County Vector Control District on Thursday announced it has confirmed that adult mosquitoes collected from three more ZIP code areas in San Jose -- 95136, 95123, and 95118 -- have tested positive for West Nile virus. Fogging is scheduled there for next week.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
One of those other pesky flaviviruses....
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Rift Valley fever in Uganda

Kabale district has recorded another case of the hemorrhagic Rift Valley fever, barely 2 months after it was declared free of the epidemic.

Dr Alex Andema, the Kabale regional referral hospital director confirmed that one person was admitted at the hospital after developing signs and symptoms of the deadly fever.

Samples were taken from him and taken to Uganda Virus Laboratory in Entebbe and the results came out positive.

The fever is usually spread though handling of products of infected animals. "The vast majority of human infections result from direct or indirect contact with the blood or organs of infected domestic animals. The virus can be transmitted to humans through the handling of animal tissue during slaughtering or butchering, assisting with animal births, conducting veterinary procedures, or from the disposal of carcasses or fetuses," he said.

"There is no doubt the threat is real, we need to see how to put our hands together so that we can fight this epidemic," Said Dr Andama.

This is the 2nd outbreak of the Rift Valley fever in Uganda in less than 2 months. The disease was first recorded in Kenya in 1931 and later in the 1990s in Somalia, Kenya, and Tanzania.

Outside Africa, the disease has been reported in Saudi Arabia and Yemen.
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Broad Cross-Protection in Preclinical Models by a HPV L1/L2 Chimeric VLP vaccine

At least 15 high-risk human papillomaviruses (HPVs) are linked to anogenital preneoplastic lesions and cancer. Currently, there are three licensed prophylactic HPV vaccines based on virus-like particles (VLPs) of the L1 major capsid protein from HPV-2, -4, or -9, including the AS04-adjuvanted HPV-16/18 L1 vaccine. The L2 minor capsid protein contains HPV-neutralizing epitopes that are well conserved across numerous high-risk HPVs. Therefore, the objective of our study was to assess the capacity to broaden vaccine-mediated protection using AS04-adjuvanted vaccines based on VLP chimeras of L1 with one or two L2 epitopes. Several chimeric VLPs were constructed by inserting L2 epitopes within the DE loop and/or C terminus of L1. Based on the shape, yield, size, and immunogenicity, one of seven chimeras was selected for further evaluation in mouse and rabbit challenge models. The chimeric VLP consisted of HPV-18 L1 with insertions of HPV-33 L2 (amino acid residues 17 to 36; L1 DE loop) and HPV-58 L2 (amino acid residues 56 to 75; L1 C terminus). This chimeric L1/L2 VLP vaccine induced persistent immune responses and protected against all of the different HPVs evaluated (HPV-6, -11, -16, -31, -35, -39, -45, -58, and -59 as pseudovirions or quasivirions) in both mouse and rabbit challenge models. The degree and breadth of protection in the rabbit were further enhanced when the chimeric L1/L2 VLP was formulated with the L1 VLPs from the HPV-16/18 L1 vaccine. Therefore, the novel HPV-18 L1/L2 chimeric VLP (alone or in combination with HPV-16 and HPV-18 L1 VLPs) formulated with AS04 has the potential to provide broad protective efficacy in human subjects.

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Genital Herpes Vaccine Shows Promise In Reducing Outbreaks

Genital Herpes Vaccine Shows Promise In Reducing Outbreaks | Virology News | Scoop.it
Clinical trials of a new herpes vaccine have had promising results in reducing incidences of viral shedding.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
What's the difference between love and herpes? Herpes LASTS...!
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Shocking number of children are born with a dangerous virus you've never heard of

Shocking number of children are born with a dangerous virus you've never heard of | Virology News | Scoop.it
Amanda Devereaux was excited when she found out she was pregnant with her second child. During her routine 20-week ultrasound, doctors found her daughter, Pippa's brain was about three weeks behind in development. An amniocentesis confirmed Pippa had Cytomegalovirus or CMV. Only about 9 percent of expectant mothers have ever heard about CMV, even though 1 in 150 children are born with the virus.

Ed Rybicki's insight:
Well, I have, obviously...but it's a point worth making
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Plum pox virus capsid protein suppresses plant PAMP-triggered immunity

Perception of pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) by immune receptors launches defence mechanisms referred to as PAMP-triggered immunity (PTI). Successful pathogens must suppress PTI pathways via the action of effectors to efficiently colonize their hosts. So far, plant PTI has been reported to be active against most classes of pathogens, except viruses, although this defence layer was recently hypothesized as an active part of antiviral immunity which needs to be suppressed by viruses for infection success. Here, we report that Arabidopsis PTI genes are regulated upon infection by viruses and contribute to plant resistance to Plum pox virus (PPV). Our experiments further show that PPV suppresses two early PTI responses, the oxidative burst and marker gene expression, during Arabidopsis infection. In planta expression of PPV capsid protein (CP) was found to strongly impair these responses in Nicotiana benthamiana and Arabidopsis, revealing its PTI-suppressor activity. In summary, we provide the first clear evidence that plant viruses acquired the ability to suppress PTI mechanisms via the action of effectors, highlighting a novel strategy employed by viruses to escape plant defences. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

Ed Rybicki's insight:
What can I say - viruses are smart?!
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Mosquito monitoring stepped up at Schiphol after yellow fever carriers found 

Mosquito monitoring stepped up at Schiphol after yellow fever carriers found  | Virology News | Scoop.it
The product safety board NVWA is to step up its monitoring of mosquitoes at Amsterdam's Schiphol airport following the discovery of three yellow fever mosquitoes in two separate traps.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
So guess who's just gone through Schiphol....B-)
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Watch how this robotic-like T7 virus infects a cell

Watch how this robotic-like T7 virus infects a cell | Virology News | Scoop.it
If there was any doubt that viruses are basically microscopic machines, let this recreation of a T7 bacteriophage infecting an ecoli cell put those reservations to rest. In this animated video, the virus can be seen unfolding its six phage tail fibers as it latches on to an unsuspecting bacterium. Once stable and secure, it pierces the surface of the cell with its extended tail and injects its DNA directly into the cytoplasm. Following this genetic violation, the tail disassembles, allowing the cell's membrane to reseal. Mission accomplished.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
Sublime B-)
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Meet the virus that slays cancer cells with extreme prejudice

Meet the virus that slays cancer cells with extreme prejudice | Virology News | Scoop.it
A simple virus that causes mild stomach upsets in humans can turn cancer cells into mincemeat like no one’s business. And cancer cells had better watch their backs, as the Canadian Cancer Society announced Wednesday that it is kicking in $38.1 million for cutting-edge research in Nova Scotia.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
Reovirus as cancer killer!  An orphan finds a home.
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With more military personnel in places where Zika is common, the US Army is working on a vaccine.

With more military personnel in places where Zika is common, the US Army is working on a vaccine. | Virology News | Scoop.it
With American personnel stationed throughout the region where Zika is infecting people, and with Zika coming to the US, Army docs are working on a vaccine.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
Of course they are...interesting to see what they work on - because it tells where they are / may be deployed.
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Virus Hacks Host Genome, Steals CRISPR to Protect Itself

Virus Hacks Host Genome, Steals CRISPR to Protect Itself | Virology News | Scoop.it
Viruses have often been described as the ultimate parasite, shedding all of their nonessential parts and leaving behind an extremely efficient genetic transfer apparatus. Phage viruses have evolved to infect various bacteria proficiently and hijack their replication machinery to make more viruses. Yet, this often doesn’t preclude a different virus from concomitantly infecting the same bacterium and competing with or overtaking the original phage invader.

Ed Rybicki's insight:
HATE the word "hack" in the context of infection: so lazy!
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Mosquito saliva increases disease severity following dengue virus infection

Mosquito saliva increases disease severity following dengue virus infection | Virology News | Scoop.it
Insects transmit diseases when, probing for blood vessels, they inject saliva together with viral, bacterial, or parasitic pathogens into the skin of mammalian hosts. A study in mice published on June 16, 2016 in PLOS Pathogens suggests a critical role of mosquito saliva in the outcome of dengue virus infection.
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Vaccine-derived strain of polio virus found in sewage in Indian city

Vaccine-derived strain of polio virus found in sewage in Indian city | Virology News | Scoop.it
City of nearly 7 million people in southern India has declared a "high alert" for polio after an active strain of the virus was found
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Mechanism for Rift Valley fever virus infection discovered

Viruses can't live without us -- literally. As obligate parasites, viruses need a host cell to survive. Scientists are exploiting this characteristic by developing therapeutics that close off pathways necessary for viral infection, essentially stopping pathogens in their tracks. Rift Valley fever virus and other bunyaviruses may soon be added to the list of viruses denied access to a human host. Researchers have now discovered a mechanism by which RVFV hijacks the host machinery to cause infection.
Ed Rybicki's insight:
Bunyaviruses: rapidly becoming more important. Especially mosquito-transmitted ones
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