‘Exciting discovery’ in common cold cure search

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Scientists believe they may have made a breakthrough in the search for a cure for the common cold.

Researchers say treatments could be developed based on antimicrobial peptides that occur naturally in the immune systems of humans and animals.

The Edinburgh Napier University team observed how they increase the body’s natural response to rhinovirus infection.

Rhinovirus is the main virus responsible for the common cold.

The team synthesised antimicrobial peptides found in pigs and sheep, and assessed their impact on lung cells infected with rhinovirus.

The peptides successfully attacked the virus, and could provide clues for developing novel treatments based on peptides found in nature.

Next steps

Dr Peter Barlow, associate professor of immunology and infection at the university, said: “This is an exciting discovery and our next steps will be to modify the peptide to make it even better at killing this virus.

“This research is still in the early stages, but we will ultimately be looking to develop drug treatments that have the potential to cure the common cold.”

An effective treatment for the cold could help sufferers of more serious lung conditions, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), for whom viral infections can pose a serious health risk.

Prof Barlow added: “There is no cure and no vaccine so the development of effective therapies for human rhinovirus, the main causal agent of the common cold and one of the most common causes of viral respiratory tract infections, is an urgent requirement.

“This study represents a major step towards finding a treatment.”

Earlier research by Dr Barlow had underlined the potential of antimicrobial peptides in tackling the influenza A virus.

The latest study, was funded by the Chief Scientist Office and medical research charity Tenovus Scotland.

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One Comment to ‘Exciting discovery’ in common cold cure search

  1. Susie says:

    I was not really having a problem breathing at first. My throat was burning; I thought I had strep throat. I had pain in my neck, and there was swelling around my collar bone. The first doctor I went to said he did not know why there was swelling. He gave me antibiotics and told me that if the swelling was not better to come back in two weeks. I went back in two weeks and he said he did not know what was wrong. Since I do not have insurance, I went to a hospital emergency room, and they said I have COPD.The disease does not improve. My “good days” are far and few these days. My dad and his dad died from this. I am only writing this to inform others that nothing was really working to help my condition.I started on COPD herbal formula i ordered from Health Herbal Clinic,i read reviews from other previous patients who used the herbal formula, my symptoms totally declined over a 5 weeks use of the COPD natural herbal formula. i am now doing very well, my lungs are totally repaired!! Visit there website www. healthherbalclinic. net

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