Ice Caps Melt, Prehistoric Virus Escapes. No, It's Not a Movie.

A couple of months ago I talked about the connection between global warming and the Zika virus. Today I would like to discuss another interesting side effect we might observe in the next decades thanks to global warming. The ice caps will melt. Big deal, we already knew that. But have you ever thought of the stuff trapped in that ice that's going to thaw? What if some of that stuff isn't really dead, just dormant, waiting to come back? Sounds like fiction, but it's not. Up until a few years ago the general notion was that viruses were small. How small? Let's think in terms of genome units: viruses usually carry a handful of genes, either coded into DNA or RNA, and you can think of these as longs strings of four letters: A, C, T (or U if it's RNA), or G. The letters are called nucleotides, and the genome of most common viruses is typically in the order of tens of thousands of nucleotides long. By comparison, the human genome, with its 3 billion nucleotides, is enormous. The notion of viruses being "small" compared to living cells was turned upside down with the discovery of megaviruses in 2010 (over one million bases) and, in 2013, of the pandoraviruses, a family of viruses that can reach a staggering 2.5 million bases in genome size. Before you freak out: so far these gigantic viruses have only been found in unicellular organisms called amoebas, not in humans or any other animals. Amoebas acquire their nutrients through phagocytosis and that's also how the gigant...
Source: Science - The Huffington Post - Category: Science Source Type: news

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Publication date: September 2019Source: Biomedicine &Pharmacotherapy, Volume 117Author(s): Qingjun Pan, Zejian Liu, Shuzhen Liao, Lin Ye, Xing Lu, Xiaoqun Chen, Zhihang Li, Xinxin Li, Yong-Zhi Xu, Huafeng LiuAbstractSystemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a systemic autoimmune disease characterized by inflammation and abnormal production of autoantibody, but the mechanisms of the aberrant immune responses are currently unknown. Recently, growing evidence has suggested that infection plays a pivotal role in SLE. Here, we investigate the role of infectious agents (e.g., Epstein-Barr virus, parvovirus B19, human T-lymphotro...
Source: Biomedicine and Pharmacotherapy - Category: Drugs & Pharmacology Source Type: research
Abstract Protein-protein interactions govern all molecular processes for living organisms, even those involved in pathogen infection. Pathogens such as virus, bacteria, and parasites contain proteins that help the pathogen to attach, penetrate, and settle inside the target cell. Thus, it is necessary to know the regions in pathogenic proteins that interact with host cell receptors. Currently, powerful pathogen databases are available and many pathogenic proteins have been recognized, but many pathogenic proteins have not been characterized. This work developed a program in MATLAB environment based on the time-freq...
Source: Bioinformatics and Biology Insights - Category: Bioinformatics Authors: Tags: Bioinform Biol Insights Source Type: research
(Indiana University) Researchers at Indiana University School of Medicine have discovered how toxoplasma gondii, a single-celled parasite, maintains a steady supply of nutrients while replicating inside of its host cell: it calls for delivery.
Source: EurekAlert! - Biology - Category: Biology Source Type: news
ConclusionsOverall results revealed that herbal plants may be active in the development of novel and cheap antimalarial compounds.
Source: Chinese Herbal Medicines - Category: Complementary Medicine Source Type: research
The common fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, is an outstanding model to study the molecular basis of anti-pathogen immunity. The parasitic nematode Heterorhabditis gerrardi, together with its mutualistic bacteria Photorhabdus asymbiotica, infects a wide range of insects, including D. melanogaster. Recently we have shown that Transforming Growth Factor-β (TGF-ß) signaling in D. melanogaster is regulated in response to parasitic nematode infection. In the current study, we investigated the contribution of two TGF-ß signaling branches, the activin and the Bone Morphogenic Protein (BMP), to D. melanogaster i...
Source: Frontiers in Physiology - Category: Physiology Source Type: research
The molecular bases of the host-parasitoid interactions in the biological system Acyrthosiphon pisum (Harris) (Homoptera, Aphididae) - Aphidius ervi (Haliday) (Hymenoptera, Braconidae) have been elucidated allowing the identification of a gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase, the active component of maternal venom secretion, and teratocytes, the embryonic parasitic factors responsible for the host physiology regulation after parasitization. Teratocytes, cells deriving from the dissociation of serosa, the parasitoid embryonic membrane, are responsible for extra-oral digestion of host tissues in order to provide a suitable nutritio...
Source: Frontiers in Physiology - Category: Physiology Source Type: research
An effective vaccine against the Plasmodium parasite is likely to require the induction of robust antibody and T cell responses. Chimeric virus-like particles are an effective vaccine platform for induction of antibody responses, but their capacity to induce robust cellular responses and protection against pathogen challenge when incorporating T cell epitopes has not been established. To evaluate this, we produced chimeric constructs using the murine polyomavirus structural protein with surface-exposed CD8+ or CD4+ T cell or B cell repeat epitopes derived from the Plasmodium yoelii circumsporozoite protein, and assessed im...
Source: Frontiers in cellular and infection microbiology - Category: Microbiology Source Type: research
AbstractPurpose of ReviewEosinophils are short-lived granulocytes that contain a variety of proteins and lipids traditionally associated with host defense against parasites. The primary goal of this review is to examine more recent evidence that challenged this rather outdated role of eosinophils in the context of pulmonary infections with helminths, viruses, and bacteria.Recent FindingsWhile eosinophil mechanisms that counter parasites, viruses, and bacteria are similar, the kinetics and impact may differ by pathogen type. Major antiparasitic responses include direct killing and immunoregulation, as well as some mechanism...
Source: Current Allergy and Asthma Reports - Category: Allergy & Immunology Source Type: research
Publication date: Available online 17 June 2019Source: International Journal for Parasitology: Drugs and Drug ResistanceAuthor(s): Ariane J. Sousa-Batista, Wallace Pacienza-Lima, Maria Inês Ré, Bartira Rossi-BergmannAbstractThe development of an effective amphotericin B (AmB) topical formulation to replace the systemically toxic injections currently used in cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) treatment is challenging due to poor absorption through the skin. Aiming at an effective local chemotherapy, we designed PLGA (poly lactide-co-glycolide acid) microspheres loaded with deoxycholate amphotericin B (d-AmB) for both...
Source: International Journal for Parasitology: Drugs and Drug Resistance - Category: Parasitology Source Type: research
Publication date: Available online 18 June 2019Source: Veterinary ParasitologyAuthor(s): Chuanwen Wang, Yu Huang, Jiayi Zhao, Yuyun Ma, Xiaolin Xu, Qiang Wan, Hao Li, He Yu, Baoliang PanAbstractThe poultry red mite, Dermanyssus gallinae, is a blood-feeding ectoparasite that affects egg-laying hens worldwide. Strategies to control this parasite have focused in the use of entomopathogenic fungi, such as Metarhizium anisopliae. However, only a few studies have evaluated the use of Aspergillus oryzae to control D. gallinae and none of them have employed native strains. In the work presented here, a novel entomopathogenic fungu...
Source: Veterinary Parasitology - Category: Veterinary Research Source Type: research
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