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Latest PLoS Pathogens Stories

2011-02-25 12:57:27

Although untreated HIV infection eventually results in immunodeficiency (AIDS), a small group of people infected with the virus, called elite suppressors (0.5 percent of all HIV-infected individuals), are naturally able to control infection in the absence of antiretroviral therapy, or HAART. Elite suppressors and HIV- infected individuals treated with HAART have similar levels of virus in the blood stream. However, levels of HIV integrated into immune cells are much lower in elite suppressors...

2011-02-18 12:22:52

Scientists have identified the gene that allows the Rubella virus to block cell death and reverse engineered a mutant gene that slows the virus's spread. Tom Hobman and a team of researchers at the University of Alberta's Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry believed that RNA viruses were able to spread by blocking the pathways in cells that lead to cell suicide, and isolated the responsible gene in Rubella, also known as German measles. They then created a mutant version of this gene that made...

2011-02-11 13:37:21

Scientists have demonstrated that stopping the ability of methicillin-resistant Staphylcoccus aureus (MRSA) to degrade RNA can inhibit its spread, both in the laboratory and in infected mice. The team of researchers is led by Paul Dunman of the University of Rochester Medical Center and includes scientists from three other laboratories. These results are reported February 10 in the open access journal PLoS Pathogens. MRSA infections are extremely virulent. The superbug causes nearly 500,000...

2011-02-11 13:22:32

RNA recycling system gone awry brings MRSA to a halt Scientists have discovered a new way to attack dangerous pathogens, marking a hopeful next step in the ever-escalating battle between man and microbe. In a paper published online Feb. 10 in the journal PLoS Pathogens, scientists demonstrate that by stopping bacteria's ability to degrade RNA "“ a "housekeeping" process crucial to their ability to thrive "“ scientists were able to stop methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus...

2011-01-14 08:57:23

New findings are bringing scientists closer to an effective HIV vaccine. Researchers from Seattle Biomedical Research Institute (Seattle BioMed), Vanderbilt University and the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard report findings showing new evidence about broadly-reactive neutralizing antibodies, which block HIV infection. Details are published January 13 in the open-access journal PLoS Pathogens. According to author Leo Stamatatos, Ph.D., director of the Viral Vaccines Program at Seattle...

2011-01-14 08:50:08

Scientists at the University of Zurich (Switzerland) and the Federal Research Institute for Animal Health (FLI; Tuebingen) have challenged the notion that airborne prions are innocuous. Details of how inhalation of prion-tainted aerosols induced disease are published January 13 in the open-access journal PLoS Pathogens. It is known that prions can be transmitted through contaminated surgical instruments and, more rarely, through blood transfusions. However, prions are not generally considered...

2011-01-07 11:00:58

For the first time, researchers have developed a 3D picture of a herpes virus protein interacting with a key part of the human cellular machinery, enhancing our understanding of how it hijacks human cells to spread infection and opening up new possibilities for stepping in to prevent or treat infection. This discovery uncovers one of the many tactical manoeuvres employed by the virus. The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)-funded team, led by The University of...

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2010-11-12 11:22:14

Study sheds light on what E. coli genes are doing inside the body during infection Urinary tract infections are a painful, recurring problem for millions of women. They are also getting more dangerous as bacteria develop resistance to the most common treatments. Scientists from the University of Michigan have moved one step closer to a vaccine that could prevent a majority of urinary tract infections, which are caused by E. coli bacteria. Using a genetic technique rarely used to look at...

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2010-11-12 10:57:15

Dramatic advance in understanding of how the body fights bacteria paves way for more effective vaccines A new breakthrough in the fight against pneumonia, meningitis and septicaemia has been announced today by scientists in Dublin and Leicester. The discovery will lead to a dramatic shift in our understanding of how the body's immune system responds to infection caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae and pave the way for more effective vaccines. The collaborative research, jointly led by Dr Ed...

2010-09-03 18:02:20

A scientific breakthrough on how HIV takes control of cell division Dr. Ó°ric A. Cohen, Director of the Human Retrovirology research unit at the Institut de recherches cliniques de Montr©al (IRCM), and his team published yesterday, in the online open-access journal PLos Pathogens, the results of their most recent research on the role of the Vpr protein in HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) infection and AIDS (acquired autoimmune deficiency syndrome). "We...