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Sweet Discovery Raises Hope for Treating Ebola, Lassa, Marburg and Other Fast-Acting Viruses

Date: 15.11.2010 


A new research report appearing in the Journal of Leukocyte Biology suggests that a purified and modified form of a simple sugar chain may stop fast-acting and deadly viruses, such as Ebola, Lassa, or Marburg viruses, in their tracks.

This compound, called chlorite-oxidized oxyamylose or COAM, could be a very attractive therapeutic option because not only did this compound enhance the early-stage immune defenses in mice, but because of sugar's abundance, it is derived from easily obtainable sources.

The purified compound almost completely blocked the killer virus by speeding the response of the body's fast-acting immune cells, called white blood cells or leukocytes, at the early stage of infection.

Original Paper:

S. Li, S. Starckx, E. Martens, C. Dillen, N. Lamerant-Fayel, N. Berghmans, M. Gouwy, M. van Pel, H. Heremans, C. Kieda, W. E. Fibbe, A. Billiau, J. Van Damme, G. Opdenakker. Myeloid cells are tunable by a polyanionic polysaccharide derivative and co-determine host rescue from lethal virus infection. Journal of Leukocyte Biology, 2010; 88 (5): 1017 DOI: 10.1189/jlb.1109724







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