At the 61st annual meeting of The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH) researchers from VHFC and Corgenix reported on their findings using ELISA-based diagnostic tests at Kenema Government Hospital in Sierra Leone. Lead researcher Matt Boisen and VHFC Director Robert F.
In a recent paper in the magazine Science, VHFC researchers Pardis Sabeti and colleagues argue that many of the diseases labeled as 'emerging infectious diseases' are actually more an issue of 'emerging diagnostics'.
In the August issue of PLoS One, VHFC research scientists from the Ollman Saphire lab at the Scripps Research Institute describe the molecular details of how the Lassa NP protein performs its nuclease activity. Digestion of viral RNA by this mechanisms appears to cause suppression of immune activity in infected cells and may be an important mediator of Lassa fever progression and disease.
Rapidly evolving viruses and other pathogens can have an immense impact on human evolution as natural selection acts to increase the prevalence of genes providing resistance to disease. In their new paper, Andersen et al, provide evidence for two genes - IL21 and LARGE - as being targets of natural selection caused by Lassa virus.
Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute have determined the atomic structure of a protein that the Lassa fever virus uses to make copies of itself within infected cells. The structural data reveal an unexpected molecular crevice where the viral protein grips the viral genes, making this crevice a target for potential antiviral drugs.
Research conducted by scientists from Tulane University and Kenema Government Hospital is reshaping our understanding of acute Lassa Fever. Analyses conducted on survivors of Lassa Fever suggests that only Lassa virus viremia assessed by antigen-capture immunoassay, nucleic acid detection or virus isolation should be used to diagnose acute Lassa virus infection in West Africans.
Consortium researchers report on the first comprehensive rapid diagnosis and real time characterization of an acute case of hemorrhagic Lassa Fever in a third trimester pregnant Sierra Leonean woman who survived the illness despite fetal demise.
The arenaviral nucleoprotein NP has been implicated in suppression of the host innate immune system, but the mechanism by which this occurs has remained elusive. In their paper published in the January 24th edition of PNAS, Dr. Ollmann-Saphire and her colleagues present the crystal structure at 1.5 Å of the immunosuppressive C-terminal portion of Lassa virus NP and illustrate that, unexpectedly, its 3D fold closely mimics that of the DEDDh family of exonucleases.