A new UW breakthrough could prevent HIV - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

A new UW breakthrough could prevent HIV

MADISON (WKOW) -- Researchers at the University of Wisconsin - Madison have developed a synthetic protein that could prevent human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV.

HIV and several other human viruses rely on interactions between proteins and the virus to infect a healthy cell.  The new discovery could develop proteins that block a virus from hurting healthy cells.

In a fundamental study of how to control protein shape, UW chemist Samuel Gellman's research team, created a set of peptide-like molecules that successfully blocked HIV infection of human cells in laboratory experiments.

By interacting with a piece of a crucial HIV protein, the synthetic molecules physically prevent the virus from infecting host cells.

The idea shows promise as a new avenue for targeting other unwanted protein interactions as well, Gellman says.

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