Social Media Sidebar


Please sign up, comment on articles and bring your friends!

Current poll

PlanetTech is asking:

What do you think about our new web site?

Love it, indeed
Really good solution
Same as old one
The old one was better
This is a new option

Quote of the day

Just because something doesn’t do what you planned it to do doesn’t mean it’s useless.


Thomas Edison

Test unravels history of infection

Posted in Science on 6th Jun, 2015 12:28 AM by AlexMuller

Researchers claim to have developed a single test that is able to identify past exposure to every known human virus infection, using a drop of blood. The technique decodes the infection history imprinted in our immune response. The scientists hope that the test will eventually provide important insight into how viruses contribute to development of a range of diseases.


During a virus infection, your immune system generates antibodies designed to fight the virus. Each antibody recognises a tiny fragment of the virus and their interaction is very specific - they fit like a lock and key.
Virus-specific antibodies can be long-lived; often persisting many years after an infection has disappeared. So, your antibody repertoire represents a historical record of all of the viruses that have infected you.
This immunological catalogue has been used for years to identify past virus exposure, but the diagnostic tests routinely used have been limited to one, or at most a few, different virus strains.
Prof Stephen Elledge from the Harvard University Medical School US, who led the research team, told Science in Action that the new technique will overcome this limitation: "You can ask questions about all viruses rather than have to do things one at a time, so it allows you to discover connections between different populations or different diseases amongst groups of people. "Now that we can look at all viruses, it's a complete game-changer."
Researchers have been working out the genetic sequence - the blueprint - of all human viruses for many years. The team used this information to generate a pool of bacteriophage - viruses that grow easily in the laboratory - with each bacteriophage expressing a tiny fragment of this human-virus blueprint on its surface.
Antibodies present in a drop of human blood could then be used as bait to go fishing in this phage pool - only bacteriophage that express protein fragments recognised by the antibodies in the blood sample will be caught. Sequencing the bacteriophage DNA reveals the human viruses that an individual has been exposed to.

Tags: medicineresearchimmune systembacteriavirusinfectionblood test

Read original article » Back to category


Author: Guest
Posted: 2015-06-06
It is amazing how many diagnostic tests can be performed using a sample of human blood; new developments include cancer and now this screen for viruses - great Reply


Recent headlines

  • Posted in Science on 2019-01-05 00:26:50
    China Lands Chang'e 4 on the Far Side of the more
    Posted in Science on 2018-12-31 00:24:45
    Support for Human Gene Editing to Fix Diseases in more
    Posted in Science on 2018-12-31 00:15:06
    Will Mimicking The Nervous System Advance more
    Posted in Science on 2018-12-26 15:04:48
    NASA Gives Us Sugar in Space to Confirm Building more
    Posted in Business on 2018-12-21 22:48:10
    US Air Force Funds SpaceX Starlink For $28.7 more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-10 01:33
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-20 07:17
Spacex says China is their main competitor for more
Posted in Software on 2013-10-20 06:43
Pirate Bay Browser Clocks 1,000,000 more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-10 02:10
Google reportedly investing hundreds of millions into more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-14 03:13
Endothelial Cells Can Repair and Regenerate Organs, more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Spacex says China is their main competitor for more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Staring at Your Phone Could Be Making You Short more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Oculus Rift virtual reality headset coming to mobile, more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Delivering drugs via nanoparticles to target more

Recent Blog Posts

  • Posted by AlexMuller
    Even light drinking increases risk of more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Researchers have discovered how to slow more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Human retinas grown in a dish explain how color vision more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    The smartphone app that can tell you’re depressed before more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Neural networks don’t understand what optical illusions more

Login to your Account

Login to your PlanetTech Account here

Remember me

Create a New Account

You just need username and password

The following errors occured:
Verify password:
Remember me