AEG12 inhibits family of viruses

  • IASbaba
  • March 27, 2021
  • 0
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AEG12 inhibits family of viruses

Part of: GS Prelims and GS – III –  Biodiversity; Sci & Tech

In news

  • According to scientists at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) and their collaborator, a mosquito protein, called AEG12, strongly inhibits the family of viruses that cause yellow fever, dengue, West Nile, and Zika, and also weakly inhibits coronaviruses, 

Key takeaways 

  • The researchers found that AEG12 works by destabilising the viral envelope, breaking its protective covering. 
  • The protein does not affect viruses that do not have an envelope.
  • At the molecular level, AEG12 rips out the lipids 
  • The findings could lead to therapeutics against viruses that affect millions of people around the world.
  • While the researchers demonstrated that AEG12 was most effective against flaviviruses — the family of viruses to which Zika, West Nile, and others belong — they felt it is possible AEG12 could be effective against SARS-CoV-2. 
  • But, it will take years of bioengineering to make AEG12 a viable therapy for Covid-19.

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