Researchers systematically track protein interactions in defense against viruses

Medical Xpress | March 04, 2019

The body's defense strategies against viral infections are as diverse as the attacks themselves. A team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and the Max Planck Institute for Biochemistry has conducted a systematic investigation into a key feature of the antiviral innate immune response, namely into interferon-stimulated genes, or ISGs. The group succeeded in documenting the strategies deployed by ISGs to strengthen the body's own defense against viruses for the first time.
Once inside the human body, viruses act like saboteurs. They use the molecular mechanisms of cells to multiply and spread—sometimes with devastating results. To counteract this, the body has evolved an effective defense against viruses, which is part of our innate immune response. ISGs play a crucial role in this defense. "We know from studies conducted by fellow researchers that various ISGs can have an inhibiting impact on viral activity, but not exactly how they achieve this," says Andreas Pichlmair, professor of Viral Immunopathology at TUM's Institute of Virology.

Spotlight

Adeno-associated viruses (AAV) are virus particles composed of single-stranded DNA surrounded by a protein shell. Despite their simple structure, recombinant AAVs (rAAV) can perform the important role of delivering nucleic acids into cells during gene therapy.

Spotlight

Adeno-associated viruses (AAV) are virus particles composed of single-stranded DNA surrounded by a protein shell. Despite their simple structure, recombinant AAVs (rAAV) can perform the important role of delivering nucleic acids into cells during gene therapy.

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