Virology News -- ScienceDaily Virology News. Read current research on the virus structure, specific viruses (H5N1 flu, West Nile virus, HIV and more) and responses.

  • Tropical viruses: Coming soon to Europe?
    on June 23, 2017 at 2:06 pm

    The mosquito-borne viral disease Chikungunya is usually found in tropical areas. Researchers have now discovered how climate change is facilitating the spread of the Chikungunya virus. Even if climate change only progresses moderately – as scientists are currently observing – the risk of infection will continue to increase in many regions of the world through the end of the 21st century. If climate change continues unchecked, the virus could even spread to southern Europe and the United States. […]

  • How pheromones trigger female sexual behavior
    on June 22, 2017 at 6:31 pm

    A new study showed how a male pheromone in mice enhances sexual behaviors in females -- and how it may enhance a different behavior, aggression, in males -- by identifying distinct neural circuits and neurons that generate a particular behavioral response to specific chemical signals. The findings point to a model for further investigating how sex-specific innate behaviors in living things are controlled. […]

  • First Chikungunya-infected Aedes aegypti mosquitoes found in Brazil
    on June 22, 2017 at 6:30 pm

    While more than 13,000 cases of Chikungunya viral disease were reported in Brazil in 2015, scientists had never before detected the virus in a captured mosquito in this country. Now, researchers have identified a mosquito -- caught in the Brazilian city of Aracaju -- that's naturally infected with the East-Central-South-African (ECSA) genotype of Chikungunya. […]

  • Zika: Studying the 'rebound virus'
    on June 21, 2017 at 4:54 pm

    Scientists are investigating how the Zika virus is able to find a safe harbor in an infected host's tissue and stage a rebound weeks after the virus was seemingly cleared by the immune system. […]

  • Regional 'hot spot' of Borna disease discovered in upper Austria
    on June 21, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    Bornaviruses cause a lethal form of encephalitis, Borna disease, among horses and sheep. To date only a few cases were reported in Austria. Recently, four horses were afflicted in the same area of Upper Austria within just two years. Tests on local shrews, the reservoir host, confirmed the suspicion of a local viral reservoir. The study documents a rare outbreak of Borna disease in a new endemic area in Austria. […]

  • The rise of giant viruses
    on June 21, 2017 at 2:04 pm

    Giant viruses acquire genes piecemeal from others, researchers have found. The discovery has implications for bioenergy production and environmental cleanup. […]

  • Mathematical biology tackles destructive plant virus
    on June 20, 2017 at 6:29 pm

    Plant diseases pose a serious threat to global food security, especially in developing countries, where millions of people depend on consuming what they harvest. In sub-Saharan Africa, one plant disease in particular -- maize lethal necrosis -- is ravaging one of the region's preferred crops for food, feed and income. But understanding its biology in order to manage the disease is difficult because the disease arises from two viruses interacting -- which is where mathematics comes into play. […]

  • How to stop the nasty lurking toxoplasmosis parasite? Target its 'stomach,' research suggests
    on June 19, 2017 at 4:09 pm

    One in three people has a potentially nasty parasite hiding inside their body -- tucked away in tiny cysts that the immune system can't eliminate and antibiotics can't touch. But new research reveals clues about how to stop it: Interfere with its digestion during this stubborn dormant phase. […]

  • First atomic structure of an intact virus deciphered with an X-ray laser
    on June 19, 2017 at 4:05 pm

    An international team of scientists has for the first time used an X-ray free-electron laser to unravel the structure of an intact virus particle on the atomic level. The method used dramatically reduces the amount of virus material required, while also allowing the investigations to be carried out several times faster than before. […]

  • Mutant mosquitoes make insecticide-resistance monitoring key to controlling Zika
    on June 19, 2017 at 4:02 pm

    One of the most common insecticides used in the battle against the Aedes aegypti mosquito has no measurable impact when applied in communities where the mosquito has built up resistance to it, a study finds. […]

  • Gaps remain in surveillance for mosquitoes that transmit Zika, new CDC data shows
    on June 19, 2017 at 2:18 pm

    As concerns over Zika virus have grown since 2015, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has turned to local public health professionals to compile data on distribution of the two primary mosquito species capable of transmitting the virus, Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. Their findings highlight both the potential widespread presence of the mosquitoes as well as gaps in local surveillance capabilities crucial to understanding the threat of Zika and other mosquito-borne diseases. […]

  • 8 in 10 Indonesian children has been infected with dengue
    on June 15, 2017 at 6:28 pm

    Indonesia has one of the highest burdens of dengue fever, a mosquito-borne virus, in the world, and children account for many cases. Well over half of all children in urban areas are infected with dengue by the age of 5, and more than 80 percent have been infected with the virus at least once by age 10, researchers now report. […]

  • Mutations that allow bird flu strain to spread among humans identified
    on June 15, 2017 at 6:28 pm

    Scientists have identified several genetic mutations that, should they arise, could potentially allow the avian influenza strain H7N9 to spread between humans. […]

  • Scientists reveal mechanism behind mosquito-borne-disease 'blocker' used to fight viruses
    on June 15, 2017 at 6:28 pm

    A new study may explain how a bacterium called Wolbachia prevents mosquitoes from transmitting deadly diseases such as dengue fever, West Nile virus and Zika. […]

  • New antibiotic effective against drug-resistant bacteria
    on June 15, 2017 at 6:28 pm

    Scientists have discovered a new antibiotic effective against drug-resistant bacteria: pseudouridimycin. The new antibiotic is produced by a microbe found in a soil sample collected in Italy and was discovered by screening microbes from soil samples. The new antibiotic kills a broad spectrum of drug-sensitive and drug-resistant bacteria in a test tube and cures bacterial infections in mice. […]

  • Influenza virus can overcome potentially crippling mutations
    on June 15, 2017 at 12:47 pm

    The effectiveness of flu vaccines and therapies could be improved thanks to new research, report scientists. […]

  • Plant compound more powerful than AZT against HIV
    on June 15, 2017 at 1:09 am

    A plant found throughout Southeast Asia traditionally used to treat arthritis and rheumatism contains a potent anti-HIV compound more powerful than the drug AZT, according to a new paper. […]

  • Fighting fire blight and detecting Salmonella
    on June 13, 2017 at 3:16 pm

    Researchers have created an effective weapon against the plant disease fire blight and a new method for detection of Salmonella. Both are based on particular viruses that attack only one species of bacteria. […]

  • Altered virus may expand patient recruitment in human gene therapy trials
    on June 13, 2017 at 3:16 pm

    For many patients, participating in gene therapy clinical trials isn't an option because their immune system recognizes and fights the helpful virus used for treatment. Now, researchers have found a solution that may allow it to evade the body's normal immune response. […]

  • Pregnancy problems not necessarily tied to Zika viral load or Dengue fever
    on June 13, 2017 at 2:20 pm

    Zika viral load and the degree of Zika symptoms during pregnancy were not necessarily associated with problems during pregnancy or fetal abnormalities at birth, researchers have found. They also found that the presence of antibodies to previously acquired dengue fever was not necessarily connected to abnormalities during pregnancy or at birth. […]

  • New technology enables effective simultaneous testing for multiple blood-borne pathogens
    on June 13, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    Identification of new pathogens requires a rapid response from industry to develop new tests and the FDA to assess test safety and efficacy. A report evaluates the new OpenArray system that offers simultaneous detection of multiple viruses, bacteria, and protozoan pathogens in human blood samples. Investigators determined that this system is a promising tool for flexible, fast, and accurate blood screening. […]

  • Bats are the major reservoir of coronaviruses worldwide
    on June 12, 2017 at 1:41 pm

    Results of a five-year study in 20 countries on three continents have found that bats harbor a large diversity of coronaviruses (CoV), the family of viruses that cause severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS). PREDICT is a globally coordinated effort to detect and discover viruses of pandemic potential and reduce risk for future epidemics. […]

  • Chemicals used to combat Zika, agricultural pests impact motor skills in infants
    on June 9, 2017 at 5:59 pm

    A chemical currently being used to ward off mosquitoes carrying the Zika virus and a commonly used insecticide that was threatened with a ban in the United States have been associated with reduced motor function in Chinese infants, a study found. […]

  • How class of drugs blocks Hepatitis C virus replication
    on June 9, 2017 at 12:21 am

    For the first time, researchers show how the antiviral class of drugs called NS5A inhibitors interacts with the hepatitis C virus, and these findings show a difference between strains of HCV. […]

  • Possible explanation for unparalleled spread of Ebola virus discovered
    on June 7, 2017 at 12:55 pm

    The world may be closer to knowing why Ebola spreads so easily thanks to a team of researchers who discovered a new biological activity in a small protein from the deadly virus. […]

  • Overcoming immune suppression to fight against bovine leukemia
    on June 7, 2017 at 12:53 pm

    A newly developed antibody drug reactivates suppressed immune cells, decreasing the bovine leukemia virus (BLV) counts in an infected cow. The antibody could be applied to treat a variety of intractable infectious diseases in cows. […]

  • Newly discovered DNA sequences can protect chromosomes in rotifers
    on June 5, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    Rotifers are tough, microscopic organisms highly resistant to radiation and repeated cycles of dehydration and rehydration. Now scientists have discovered another protective mechanism of this hardy organism: the Terminons. Their findings have implications for research on aging and genome evolution. […]

  • Development of a novel vaccine for Zika
    on June 5, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    Researchers have developed a new Zika virus vaccine that gives 100 percent protection in mice. The vaccine is the first to be based on the Zika virus NS1 protein, and the first to show single-dose protection against Zika in an immunocompetent lethal mouse challenge model. […]

  • Citizen scientists help infectious bacteria researchers
    on June 5, 2017 at 2:10 pm

    A novel method for assessing human/virus interactions in the natural environment has now been developed using citizen scientists wearing boot socks over their shoes during walks in the countryside. In the process, they found that slightly less than half of the socks were positive for the infectious disease, Campylobacter. […]

  • Details of Lassa virus structure could inform development of vaccines, therapies
    on June 2, 2017 at 6:37 pm

    A 10-year Lassa virus research project has yielded structural and functional details of a key viral surface protein that could help advance development of Lassa vaccines and antibody-based therapeutics, which are currently lacking. […]