Preventing cell death from infection: Scientists demonstrate method to find new therapies

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Posted on January 17, 2014
Preventing cell death from infection: Scientists demonstrate method to find new therapies

The new drug-discovery technique is a fast, economical, multi-round selection process that enables scientists to identify functional antibodies from a large library. Credit: The Scripps Research Institute
Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) have demonstrated the power of a new drug discovery technique, which allows them to find—relatively quickly and cheaply—antibodies that have a desired effect on cells. The TSRI scientists used the technique to discover two antibodies that protect human cells from a cold virus.

The finding includes the useful insight that the cold virus can be stopped by targeting a key viral enzyme in just the right way. More importantly, the study highlights the broad potential of this discovery method to find new ways to fight infections, cancers and other diseases, and perhaps even aging.

“This method allows you to find antibodies that prevent cell death—in this case virus-induced cell death, but potentially any kind of cell death,” said Richard A. Lerner, Institute Professor at TSRI. Lerner was the senior author of the study, which is reported online ahead of print on January 16, 2014 by the Cell Press journal Chemistry & Biology.

Read more at: Phys.org



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