IIT Mandi reveals Key Protein Structure in Covid-19 Virus

Part of structure of a key protein in COVID-19 virus was revealed by researchers from Indian Institute of Technology, Mandi.

How this study is significant?

  • Covid-19 protein structure will help in understanding mode of action & its role in spread and severity of covid-19 disease. It will also help in development of antiviral therapeutics.
  • Further, current COVID-19 treatments only manage symptoms while body fights infection with its immune defence system. It is not yet confirmed whether antiviral drugs can stop virus from replicating. One way to neutralise virus is to attack its proteins. Thus, this study will help in developing neutralising agents.

Structure of virus

This virus comprises of 16 non-structural proteins (NSP1-NSP16). Out of them, NSP1 plays a significant role in pathogenicity, that is, ability of virus to cause disease. NSP1 disrupts proteins of host cell and suppresses immune functions. NSP1 is also called as ‘host shutoff factor’.

Which Virus causes Covid-19?

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 or SARS‑CoV‑2 virus causes COVID-19. It is also called as coronavirus. Covid-19 was declared Public Health Emergency of International Concern by World Health Organisation in January 2020 later in March 2020 it was declared pandemic. Virus causing covid-19, SARS‑CoV‑2, is a positive-sense single-stranded RNA virus. It is the successor to SARS-CoV-1, that caused 2002–2004 SARS outbreak. It has zoonotic origin and it is genetically similar to bat coronavirus.




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