Researchers Designed Novel Anti-Viral Nanoparticles That Destroy Numerous Viruses


Millions of people across the world die every year because of viral infections, since the anti-viral nanoparticles that are available currently in limited amount mostly fight with little handful of associated drugs. These are the some broad-spectrum drugs preventing viral entries in to existing healthy cells, while they generally required to be taken routinely to keep the infection at bay and resistance from viral mutation is a dangerous risk.

An international team of researchers with Petr Kral, a professor from the University of Illinois at Chicago have recently designed novel anti-viral nanoparticles that have an ability to bind a broad range of viruses which includes human papillomavirus, Dengue and Lentiviruses, herpes simplex virus and respiratory syncytial virus.

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New anti-viral nanoparticles destroy multiple viruses, just unlike any other broad-spectrum antiviral that only prevents viruses from affecting cells. The findings obtained by the team have been published in the Nature Materials journal.

These newly discovered nanoparticles copy a cell surface protein, which is known as Heparin Sulfate Proteoglycan (HSPG). The major important portion of viruses like HIV, arrive at healthy cells and infect them firstly binding to the HSPGs on the surface of cell.

Petr Kral said in a statement that, “We knew the general composition of the HSPG-binding viral domains the nanoparticles should bind to, and the structures of the nanoparticles, but we did not understand why different nanoparticles behave so differently in terms of both binding strength and preventing viral entry into cells.”

Exciting drugs that copy HSPG bind to certain viruses and resists from binding, while the bond’s strength is relatively weaker. These drugs then also not able to destroy the viruses, so viruses gets flexibility to become reactivated whenever the concentrations of drugs gets decreased.

Kral added that, “We were able to provide the data needed to the design team so that they could develop a prototype of what we hope will be a very effective and safe broad-spectrum anti-viral that can be used to save lives.”