University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > MRC LMB Seminar list > Can structural studies of intact viruses really be useful in the search for better vaccines and antivirals?

Can structural studies of intact viruses really be useful in the search for better vaccines and antivirals?

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I will focus on picornaviruses, small well-studied viruses responsible for a range of human and animal dieases (from polio to the common cold), against which we have a smattering of useful vaccines and very little in the way of small molecule drugs. I will try to convince you that the increasing facility of structure analysis of such viruses makes it worth attempting to make better vaccines and new anti-virals by reference to structural information, illustrating this by our work especially on foot-and-mouth disease virus, which is responsible for a terrible disease in livestock, and the on the quite different viruses responsible for hand-foot-and-mouth disease in humans, currently endemic in South Asia. Attempting such a rational approach exposes the limits of our fundamental knowledge of how these viruses work, and how the immune system controls viral infections, but I will try to show that it can also throw new light on these fundamental questions.

This talk is part of the MRC LMB Seminar list series.

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