HPIV Human Para Influenza Viruses

The scientists have recently found out a new way to block the attachment of HPIV (Human Para Influenza Viruses).

HPIV

The HPIV is the leading cause of death in childhood respiratory infections. More than 30% to 40% of children die due to respiratory illness.

The HPIV latches on to the cells and injects genetic materials into the cells. This is done so that the genetic material injected starts making new viruses. The scientists have now found a way to block this entry. This method is highly efficient in blocking HPIV-3.

How is HPIV blocked?

The virus uses a specialised fusion proteins that resembles three sided corkscrew to enter human cells. Earlier cholesterol and beta amino acids were found to block the HPIV. However, they were not efficient. The scientists have now created a new peptide combining the previously found cholesterol and beta amino acids.

Gellman lab discovered that modified beta amino acids containing peptides can block the viruses.

Moscona Protto lab earlier hooked the peptide to a molecule of cholesterol. This created a greasy cell membrane that blocked the virus.

When the above two methods were combined, the anti-viral efficacy tripled.

Peptides

Peptides are short chain of amino acids. They are connected with one another in a sequence of peptide bonds. They are distinguished from proteins by shorter length. Peptides help human body to fight against microbes.

About HPIV

It Is a single stranded RNA virus. The different strains of HPIV are as follows:

  • HPIV Type 1: Most common of Croup
  • HPIV Type 2: Causes croup and also lower and upper respiratory tract illnesses
  • HPIV Type 3: Associated with Pneumonia and Bronchiolitis
  • HPIV Type 4: Includes subtypes 4a and 4b

Croup is the swelling inside trachea. It interferes with normal breathing.

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