Treatment News : New HIV-Fighting Protein Found in Coral Reefs

POZ - Health, Life and HIV
Subscribe to:
POZ magazine
E-newsletters
Join POZ: Facebook MySpace Twitter Pinterest
Tumblr Google+ Flickr MySpace
POZ Personals
Sign In / Join
Username:
Password:

Back to home » Treatment News » May 2014

Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle

Shingles

Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV

15 Years Ago In POZ


More Treatment News

Click here for more news

Have news about HIV? Send press releases, news tips and other announcements to news@poz.com.


emailprint

May 6, 2014

New HIV-Fighting Protein Found in Coral Reefs

Researchers have uncovered a new class of proteins, found in coral reefs, that can block HIV from entering immune cells. The hope is that these natural elements might one day be used as an active agent in a microbicide.

Called cnidarians, the proteins derive from coral, the tiny invertebrates that live in colonies on the ocean floor (coral are part of the phylum Cnidaria, which also includes jellyfish). These specific proteins were extracted from an area off the northern coast of Australia and then filed in the National Cancer Institute’s extract repository. Investigators tested thousands of natural extracts in the repository before honing their sights on cnidarian proteins as a possible anti-HIV agent.

Testing the proteins against laboratory strains of HIV, the researchers found that cnidarians were highly potent, blocking HIV at miniscule concentrations—one billionth of a gram. They worked by binding to the virus and preventing it from fusing with the CD4 membrane.

“It’s always thrilling when you find a brand-new protein that nobody else has ever seen before,” senior investigator Barry O’Keefe, PhD, deputy chief of the Molecular Targets Laboratory at the National Cancer Institute’s Center for Cancer Research, said in a release. “And the fact that this protein appears to block HIV infection—and to do it in a completely new way—makes this truly exciting.”

Because cnidarians attack HIV with a novel mechanism, any resistance the virus might develop to them would not drag on the efficacy of standard antiretrovirals.

Researchers will now look to produce larger amounts of the proteins for further testing.

“Making more of it is a big key,” O’Keefe said. “You can’t strip the Earth of this coral trying to harvest this protein, so our focus now is on finding ways to produce more of it so we can proceed with preclinical testing.”

To read the press release, click here.

Search: HIV, coral, cnidarians, National Cancer Institute, Barry O'Keefe.


Scroll down to comment on this story.



Name:

(will display; 2-50 characters)

Email:

(will NOT display)

City:

(will display; optional)

Comment (500 characters left):

(Note: The POZ team reviews all comments before they are posted. Please do not include either ":" or "@" in your comment. The opinions expressed by people providing comments are theirs alone. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Smart + Strong, which is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by people providing comments.)

Comments require captcha.
Please enter this number for verification:

| Posting Rules



Show comments (2 total)

 
[Go to top]


Join POZ Facebook Twitter Google+ MySpace YouTube Tumblr Flickr
Quick Links
Current Issue

HIV Testing
Safer Sex
Find a Date
Newly Diagnosed
HIV 101
Disclosing Your Status
Starting Treatment
Help Paying for Meds
Search for the Cure
POZ Stories
POZ Opinion
POZ Exclusives
Read the Blogs
Visit the Forums
Job Listings
Events Calendar


    dlw8585
    Fort Lauderdale
    Florida


    newlife202
    JOLIET
    Illinois


    OahuAJ
    Turlock
    California


    Fergie911
    Chicago
    Illinois
Click here to join POZ Personals!
Ask POZ Pharmacist

Talk to Us
Poll
Survey
Pop Watch

more surveys
Contact Us
We welcome your comments!
[ about Smart + Strong | about POZ | POZ advisory board | partner links | advertising policy | advertise/contact us | site map]
© 2014 Smart + Strong. All Rights Reserved. Terms of use and Your privacy.
Smart + Strong® is a registered trademark of CDM Publishing, LLC.