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Last updated on April 19, 2014 at 21:20 EDT

Latest Retrovirus Stories

Gamers Crack AIDS Enzyme That Had Stumped Scientists
2011-09-19 04:51:58

  Video game players have successfully pieced together the structure of a retrovirus enzyme that causes an AIDS-like ailment in rhesus monkeys--an enzyme whose configuration had stumped scientists from more than a decade, according to various reports. The feat, which is the topic of a paper published online in the journal Nature Structural & Molecular Biology on Sunday, was accomplished by players on a collaborative computer title called Foldit. Launched by the University of...

2011-04-07 16:50:16

Thematic program focuses on DNA replication, recombination and repair DNA's role as the master blueprint of the cell means that even small sequence changes can have catastrophic consequences. For this reason, much of our understanding of cancer development comes from studying how cells copy DNA and repair sequence errors -- and how these processes can go wrong. Next week, a thematic program at the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology's annual meeting at the Experimental...

2011-03-25 11:47:56

The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the cause of AIDS, makes use of the base excision repair pathway when inserting its DNA into the host-cell genome, according to a new study led by researchers at the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center "“ Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute. Crippling the repair pathway prevents the virus from completing this critical step in the retrovirus's life cycle. The findings offer potential new targets...

2011-03-11 15:36:23

How host factors aid in the release of HIV particles Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) "“ which causes AIDS "“ invades human immune cells and causes them to produce new copies of the virus, which can then infect new cells. A research team led by Professor Don C. Lamb (LMU Munich) and Priv.-Doz. Dr. Barbara Mller of Heidelberg University Hospital have now analyzed the involvement of particular components of the infected cell in virion release, and discovered that the enzyme VPS4A...

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...

2011-02-23 17:39:19

How the cell deals with transcriptional roadblocks Gene transcription is central to cell function, as it converts the information stored in the DNA into RNA molecules of defined sequence, which then program protein synthesis. The enzyme RNA polymerase II (Pol II) is responsible for this genetic readout, but is prone to transcriptional arrest. The biochemist Professor Patrick Cramer, Director of LMU's Genzentrum, and his research associate Dr. Alan Cheung have now shown for the first time...

2010-11-29 16:16:33

Retroviruses are viruses made up of RNA genetic material. Endogenous retroviruses (ERV) are those sequences derived from retroviral infections introduced into the germinal line cells that, being incorporated in the genome, are transmitted from generation to generation. According to a number of investigations, the expression of ERV can benefit the host if it is controlled; it can help, for example, in the protection of the embryo. However, given its pathogenic nature, ERV also tends to be...

2010-11-19 12:27:59

Understanding the evolution of life-threatening viruses like influenza, Ebola and dengue fever, could help us to minimize their impact. New research points the way to a fossil record of viruses that have insinuated themselves into the genomes of insects and other animals, providing clues about their evolutionary history. The findings, published online on November 18 in the open-access journal PLoS Genetics, could enable scientists to elucidate general principles in virus evolution from their...

2010-09-29 13:32:06

Biologists from The University of Texas at Arlington have uncovered virus fragments from the same family of the modern Hepatitis B virus locked inside the genomes of songbirds such as the modern-day zebra finch. The article, publishing next week in the online, open access journal PLoS Biology, marks the first time that endogenous hepadnaviruses have been found in any organism. An endogenous virus is one that deposits itself or fragments of itself into the chromosome of an organism, allowing...

2010-09-02 08:32:00

TUCSON, Ariz., Sept. 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Why is it so hard to isolate and purify human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)? Why has no one been able to see, by electron microscopy, a single HIV particle in the blood of AIDS patients, even those who have a "high viral load"? Why does HIV seem to mutate with startling rapidity? AIDS researchers have not been able to come up with answers to these questions. HERVs--human endogenous retroviruses--might provide explanations that have been...