Nanotechnology protects mice infected with lethal dose of flu virus

Among the novel applications of current-day nanomaterials to pressing medical problems are nanoviricides—nanomaterials designed to recognize and bind to surface sites on specific viruses, and then to destroy those viruses. This BUSINESS WIRE from NanoViricides, Inc. was posted at Yahoo! Finance and other sites “Treatment with NanoViricides FluCide™ Drug Candidates Resulted in a 1000-fold Reduction of Viral Load in the Lungs of Animals Infected with Lethal Dose of Influenza Virus“:

WEST HAVEN, Conn.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– NanoViricides, Inc. (OTCBB: NNVC.OB) (the “Company”) reports that post-infection treatment with its optimized FluCide™ drug candidates achieved 1,000-fold reduction in the levels of infectious virus in the lungs of animals with a lethal level of influenza virus infection. These findings corroborate the previously reported findings of both increased animal survival and protection of the lungs from influenza virus tissue damage in FluCide-treated animals in the most recent H1N1 influenza study.

The amount of infectious virus in the lungs of the infected animals treated with three of the optimized FluCide™ nanoviricide drug candidates was reduced by greater than 1000-fold as compared to the infected untreated control animals (p-values < 0.001), four days after virus infection. In contrast, animals treated with Oseltamivir (Tamiflu®, Roche) showed less than a 2-fold reduction in lung viral load at the same time point. This indicated a 500-fold greater reduction in viral load by FluCide drug candidates over Oseltamivir.

Of great clinical significance is the fact that 2 of the optimized FluCide™ drug candidates maintained this greatly reduced lung viral load at 7, 13 and 19 days after virus infection in this 21 day study. Thus, treatment with FluCide drug candidates appeared to protect against the complete cycle of infection, virus expansion and spread of infection in the lungs that follows the initial virus infection. This was not the case for the oseltamivir-treated animals. Animals treated with Oseltamivir (Tamiflu®, Roche) showed less than a 2-fold reduction in lung viral load at 4 days and the viral load was increased at 7 days to the same level as that found in the infected, untreated control animals shortly before their death. …

A drug like FluCide™ would defend against flu viruses that had mutated to escape the current vaccine. The company is also developing similar drugs specific for other viruses, including HIV, Hepatitis C, and Ebola.

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