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Wednesday, September 28, 2022

They discover a virus similar to COVID-19 can infect humans and resist vaccines

Recently discovered virus a russian bat Which is similar to SARS-CoV-2, possibly capable of infecting humans and, if it does spread, resistant to current vaccines, researchers report in the journal PLOS pathogen,

A team led by researchers from Washington State University’s Paul G. Allen School of Global Health found that proteins from bat viruses, called Khosta-2, can infect human cells and are resistant to both monoclonal antibodies and serum from people vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2. Both Khosta-2 and SARS-CoV-2 belong to the same subcategory of coronaviruses known as sarbecovirus,

“Our research further demonstrates that sarbecoviruses circulating in wildlife outside asia — even in places like western Russia, where the Khosta-2 virus was found — threaten global health and ongoing vaccination campaigns against SARS-CoV-2,” said Michael Letko, a WSU official. said virologist and corresponding author of the study.

universal vaccines

Letko explains that the discovery of Khosta-2 highlights the need to develop universal vaccines that normally protect against sarbecovirusesAnd not only against known types of SARS-CoV-2.

“Right now, there are groups that are trying to come up with a vaccine that not only protects against the next version of SARS-2, but also protects us from sarbecovirus in general,” Letko said. Specific viruses that we know infect human cells or those that pose the greatest risk of infecting us. But this is a constantly changing list. we need Expand the design of these vaccines To protect against all sarbecoviruses,” he says.

infect human cells

Although hundreds of sarbecoviruses have been discovered in recent years, mostly in bats in Asia, most are not capable to infect human cells. Khosta-1 and Khosta-2 viruses were discovered in Russian bats in late 2020, and initially appeared to be not a threat to humans.

“Genetically, these strange Russian viruses were similar to others that had been discovered in other parts of the world, but since they didn’t resemble SARS-CoV-2, no one thought they were really that excited. There were also things to be done,” Letko said. , When we studied them further, we were very surprised to find that can infect human cells, This changes our understanding of these viruses a bit, where they come from and which areas are of concern.”

Letko teamed up with a pair of WSU professors, viral ecologist Stephanie Seifert and viral immunologist Bonnie Gunn, to study the two newly discovered viruses. They determined that Khosta-1 posed little risk to humans, but Khosta-2 showed some worrying symptoms,

The team found that, like SARS-CoV-2, Khosta-2 could use cobb protein To infect cells by binding to a receptor protein called angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), which is found on all human cells. They then set out to determine whether existing vaccines protect against the new virus.

Using the serum of a human population vaccinated against COVID-19, the team found that Khosta-2 was not neutralized by current vaccines, They also tested the serum of people infected with the Omicron type, but the antibodies were also ineffective.

Fortunately, Letko explains that the new virus some genes are lacking which is believed to be involved in pathogenesis in humans. However, there is a risk that Khosta-2 recompile With other viruses such as SARS-CoV-2.

“When we see that SARS-2 has the potential to spread from humans to wildlife, and then there are other viruses like Khosta-2 waiting in animals with these properties that we don’t really want them to have, it’s in this scenario. in which you keep rolling the dice until combine to create a potentially more risky virus”, comments Letko.

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World Nation News Desk
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