The decoy pieces trick the coronavirus as it grows

The decoy pieces trick the coronavirus as it grows

Available: Northwestern University

They may be similar to networks and act like networks. But a new drug COVID-19 is a clever deception, which pulls patients in and binds them, making them worthless.

With the onset of SARS-CoV-2 disease that is beginning to abandon promising drugs, such as monoclonal antibody therapies, researchers have become increasingly interested in these “decoy” nanoparticles. Stimulating normal cells, the nanoparticles separate the diseased cells like a sponge, preventing them from attaching to the rest of the body.

In a new study, synthetic biomarkers at Northwestern University set out to describe the design rules needed to make good decoy nanoparticles resistant to viral escape. After designing and experimenting with a variety of techniques, the researchers found that a wide range of decoys – all made using a variety of techniques – were extremely versatile. against underlying disease and mutant strains.

In fact, decoy nanoparticles are up to 50 times more effective at preventing natural viral mutants, compared to traditional drugs. When tested against a viral mutant designed to resist such drugs, decoy nanoparticles are more effective and up to 1,500 times more effective at preventing disease.

While more research and clinical evaluations are needed, researchers believe that decoy nanoparticle infusions could be used someday to treat patients with severe or chronic viral infections.

The study was published at the end of last week (April 7) in the journal A little. In the paper, the team tested decoy nanoparticles against parent SARS-CoV-2 infection and five strains (including beta, delta, delta-plus and lambda) in a cell culture.

“We have shown that decoy nanoparticles are an effective inhibitor of these different types,” said Joshua Leonard of Northwestern, lead author of the study. “The different types that survived the other plants didn’t survive our decoy nanoparticles.”

“As we lead the study, diversity continues around the world,” added Neha Kamat of Northwestern, lead author of the study. “We’re always trying our decoy to be against the latest trends, and they keep working. It’s really cool.”

Leonard is an associate professor of chemical and biological engineering at Northwestern’s McCormick School of Engineering. Kamat is an assistant professor of biomedical technology at McCormick. They are both senior members of Northwestern’s Center for Synthetic Biology.

‘Evolutionary rock and a hard place’

As the SARS-CoV-2 virus has changed to new forms, some drugs have become less effective in fighting the growing disease. Last month, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) banned some monoclonal antibody drugs, for example, because they were incompatible with the subvariant omicron BA.2.

But if the treatment was not complete, the decoy nanoparticles would not have been lost to further research. Leonard said that because the decoys placed SARS-CoV-2 “between an evolutionary rock and a hard rock.”

SARS-CoV-2 binds to human cells by binding its famous spike protein to the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor. A protein in the skin of cells, ACE2 provides an entry point for disease.

To design the decoy nanoparticles, the Northwestern team used nanosized fragments (extracellular vesicles) that were naturally released from cell types. They created cells that work on these fragments to increase the gene for ACE2, leading to more ACE2 receptors on the surface of the fragments. When the disease is in contact with the lesion, these receptors are more stable than the real cells, so the disease is unable to infect the cells.

“In order for the patient to enter a cell, it needs to bind to the ACE2 receptor,” Leonard said. “Decoy nanoparticles present an evolutionary challenge for SARS-CoV-2. The virus must come up with a very different way to enter cells in order to avoid the need to use receptors. ACE2.

Future benefits

In addition to being good against drug -resistant diseases, decoy nanoparticles come with other benefits. Because they are organic (rather than synthetic) materials, the nanoparticles are unable to elicit a natural response, which stimulates inflammation and can compromise the efficacy of the drug. They also feature low acidity, making them ideal for use in continuous or continuous therapy for the treatment of serious illnesses.

With the onset of COVID-19 disease, researchers and physicians saw an unnerving gap between diagnosing the disease and developing new drugs to treat it. For future disease, decoy nanoparticles can provide a faster and more efficient treatment than the development of conventional drugs.

“Fraudulent design is one of the things that can be tried,” Leonard said. “Once you see what the patient has used, you can start building decoy pieces with those entertainers. We can move quickly in a way like that. this will reduce the risk of infection and mortality at high levels of future viral infections. ”


The ‘Decoy’ protein is synthesized against various SARS-CoV-2 strains


More information:
Taylor F. Gunnels et al, Elucidating Design Principles for Engineering Cell – Derived Vesicles to Inhibit SARS – CoV – 2 Infection, A little (2022). DOI: 10.1002 / smll.202200125

Journal information:
A little

Presented by Northwestern University

Directions: Decoy particles deceive coronavirus as it grows (2022, April 11) Retrieved 12 April 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-04-decoy-particles-coronavirus-evolves.html

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