- Study gives hope: the coronaviruses from multiplying within a cell could be stopped
- potentially better treatment for Covid-19 patients in the long term
- Method used by the researchers: special gene scissors
- The next step would be to test the method on animals.
- The Crispr method is a real glimmer of hope
- The ideal treatment would be a simple drug that could be taken after a positive corona test, the researchers find.
A research team from the Australian Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity in Australia has published the results of a new study in the magazine “Nature Communications”, which gives rise to hope. According to the researchers, the team has succeeded in stopping the coronavirus from multiplying within an infected cell. In the long term, according to the results, better treatment of Covid 19 patients could be made possible. The study results that could be achieved thanks to a new method are very promising.
Coronaviruses stop with the help of gene scissors
The researchers used special gene scissors that can be used to cut out specific parts of the genetic material from an infected cell and replace it. For their experiments, the researchers inserted an enzyme into the genetic make-up. As soon as the virus is detected, the Crispr enzyme is activated and cuts the virus, according to the study.
The technology is also effective with virus variants such as the alpha mutant. So far, however, the method has only been tested under laboratory conditions. The next step would be to test the method on animals. There are currently very few options for targeted and effective treatment of Covid 19 patients.
According to the research team, the risk of death can only be reduced by around 30 percent with current methods. The Crispr method is therefore a real glimmer of hope. Although the application is still “years, not months” away, as the study says, an effective treatment method would be a first step in the right direction.
Virus replication could be reduced by up to 98 percent
According to the study paper, the replication of SARS-CoV-2 could be prevented by more than 98%. In theory, the Crispr method could be used against all viruses whose genetic makeup is known.
However, a therapeutic benefit would first have to be shown in clinical studies. The researchers – also according to their own assessment – are still a long way from achieving this.
According to the scientists, the ideal treatment for corona patients would be a simple drug that is taken as soon as possible after a positive corona test to prevent a severe course. With the help of the new findings, the researchers hope to be able to develop such a drug at an early stage.