For humans, few things are as ubiquitous as the common cold. We catch it more than any other infectious disease and it's been with us as about as long as we've existed. But while there isn't a cure, our technology is constantly improving, and now in our corner we have Australia's fastest supercomputer helping to work out a solution.
A new broad-spectrum treatment for viruses could be as effective as antibiotics fighting bacteria, MIT researchers report. The method uses cells’ own defense systems to induce invaded cells to commit suicide, preventing the spread of the virus. In lab tests, the new drug completely cured mice that had been infected with influenza.
Any immunology textbook will tell you that once a virus enters a cell, the only way to knock that virus out is to kill the entire cell. But a new study from the Laboratory of Molecular Biology at Cambridge has shown a way to kill a virus from within the cell, leaving the virus defeated and the cell victorious and intact.
Long before you even feel sick, a new Darpa-funded bio-sensor will know what ails you. Researchers at Duke University are developing a device that can betray exposure to a virus even before a person's first sneeze, Wired's DangerRoom blog reports.
The sensor detects changes in gene expression that occur in people exposed to viruses like the common cold, flu, or the respiratory syncytial virus.