Researchers Identify Two Potential Antibodies to Protect Against Lethal Infections of Influenza B Virus

Jan, 2021 - By SMI

Researchers Identify Two Potential Antibodies to Protect Against Lethal Infections of Influenza B Virus

According to a new collaborative research study initiated by the researchers of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Researchers have reported to identify two antibodies that protected mice protect against wide range of influenza B virus strains.

Ali Ellebedy, Ph.D., co-senior author from Washington University, stated, “People forget that before COVID-19 hit last winter, we were already in the midst of a really bad influenza season, especially for children. Last year, influenza B viruses attacked much earlier in the season than usual and resulted in significant illness and death among children. We really need better treatments for influenza B. I'm hopeful that these antibodies, which neutralized every strain of influenza B that we tested, could be developed into drugs to treat patients with severe influenza B infection.”

Moreover, researchers informed that the two types of influenza viruses that causes sickness in people include influenza A virus and influenza B virus and however, most commonly used flu medication Tamiflu, is less effective against influenza B. In their previous researches, researchers identified an antibody known as 1G01 that safeguarded the mice model from the flu virus by blocking a critical viral enzyme called neuraminidase that averts viral reproduction.

In the study, researchers generated antibodies from the cells and evaluated. Later, researchers found seven different antibodies that targeted neuraminidase, however, 2 antibodies such as 1G05 and 2E01 inhibited all neuraminidases from a diverse set of influenza B viruses. These seven different antibodies were further treated on mice model with lethal dose of influenza B virus. Researchers found that mice who were treated with 1G05 and 2E01 survived and rest all died.

Researchers concluded that further studies are required for developing novel drugs utilizing these antibody against influenza B viruses.

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