Using data collected at Advanced Photon Source at the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory, researchers at The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, Calif., have for the first time solved the structure of a virus that can infect specific cancer cells.
This new knowledge may help drug designers tweak the pathogen enough so it can attack other tumor subtypes. The study was published in the October 8 issue of Structure, a Cell Press journal.
The 3-D structure of the virus, known as Seneca Valley Virus-001, reveals that it is unlike any other known member of the Picornaviridae viral family and confirms its recent designation as a separate genus "Senecavirus." The new study reveals that the virus's outer protein shell looks like a craggy golf ball one with uneven divets and raised spikes and the RNA strand beneath it is arranged in a round mesh rather like a whiffleball.
"It is not at all like other known pico...