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Yeda R&D Co. Ltd
Abstract ID: 1245
Influenza viruses have been a major cause of mortality and morbidity in man throughout recorded history. Influenza epidemics occur at regular intervals, which vary widely in severity but...
Influenza viruses have been a major cause of mortality and morbidity in man throughout recorded history. Influenza epidemics occur at regular intervals, which vary widely in severity but which always cause significant mortality and morbidity, most frequently in the elderly population. An influenza infection produces an acute set of symptoms including headache, cough, fever and general malaise. In severe cases or situations involving pre-existing pulmonary or cardiovascular disease, hospitalization is required. Pneumonia due to direct viral infection or due to secondary bacterial or viral invasion is the most frequent complication.
There is a widely recognized need for, and it would be highly advantageous to have compositions, which can be used to diagnose and treat influenza virus infection.
Scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science describe a novel oligonucleotide, also known as an Aptamer, which has been designed to complement the receptor-binding region of the influenza haemagglutinin molecule. It was constructed by screening a DNA library and processing by the SELEX procedure. This DNA Aptamer comprises of a polynucleotide sequence that can bind to a polypeptide within the binding region of the influenza virus to the host cell. The proposed mode of action of this Aptamer is by blocking the binding of influenza virus to target cell receptors and consequently preventing the virus invasion into the host cells. Aptamer is capable of inhibiting the haemagglutinin capacity of the virus and the viral infectivity in vitro. Furthermore, it was shown in an animal model to inhibit viral infection by different influenza strains, as manifested by up to 99% reduction of virus burden in the lungs of treated mice.
The novel DNA Aptamer is a promising candidate for therapeutic as well as diagnostic uses: including a novel therapy for influenza and the detection of influenza infection in vertebrates such as avian, swine and human.
Please enquire quoting reference no. 1245 regarding licensing or codevelopment partnerships.
Last Updated May 2015