Baculovirus-recognising human cell receptor identified for the first time

Baculovirus (BV) and its receptor syndecan-1 immunolabelled with fluorescent markers from human cells. Images were taken with confocal laser scanning microscope.

The receptor used by baculovirus to enter and interact with human cells has been identified. This syndecan–1 receptor was identified for the first time in a recent collaborative study carried out by the University of Eastern Finland and the University of Jyväskylä in Finland. The findings increase our understanding of the strategies by which the virus causes infection in cells and further facilitates the development of baculovirus for applications of gene transfer. According to the researchers, the identification of the syndecan–1 receptor helps in understanding the ways baculovirus interacts with human cells and sheds further light on the mechanisms the virus uses in human cells.

The study also focused on the role of the syndecan–1 receptor in the cell penetration of baculovirus.

The study was published in the prestigious Journal of Virology. The article was featured in the Spotlight section of the journal, which is reserved for especially interesting and distinguished publications.

Used in drugs and vaccines

Baculovirus is an insect-infecting virus, which is largely utilised in biotechnology applications. Baculoviruses are used, for example, in the manufacturing of Glyberan, the first gene therapy of the Western world, and in the manufacturing of the cancer vaccines Cervarix and Provenge, and the Flublok. The technology is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, FDA, and the European Medicines Agency, EMA.

Baculovirus is not harmful to , and this is why baculoviruses have become subjects of intensive research also with regard to gene therapy. In gene therapy, DNA to correct genetic errors is transported into cells using a variety of methods. Earlier studies have not been able to identify the receptor that recognises the virus, despite the fact that baculovirus has been studied intensively for decades.

The doctoral dissertation of Ms Paula Turkki, MA, on the topic in the field of will be publicly examined at the Department of Biological and Environmental Science of the University of Jyväskylä on 25 October 2013.

More information: Makkonen, K. et al. 6-O- and N-sulfated syndecan-1 promotes baculovirus binding and entry into Mammalian cells, Journal of Virology, 2013. 87(20):11148-11159, jvi.asm.org/content/87/20/11148.abstract

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Researchers develop prototype chikungunya vaccine

Mar 21, 2013

Wageningen University in the Netherlands has developed a prototype vaccine against chikungunya in a joint effort with the Erasmus Medical Centre and TI Pharma. This prototype may hopefully lead to the first working vaccine ...

Researchers learn from nature

Feb 05, 2013

A research team of scientists from the European Molecular Biology Laboratory of Grenoble and the Institut de Génétique et de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire (IGBMC) in Strasbourg have now, for the first ...

Recommended for you

Diet affects men's and women's gut microbes differently

5 hours ago

The microbes living in the guts of males and females react differently to diet, even when the diets are identical, according to a study by scientists from The University of Texas at Austin and six other institutions published ...

Researchers explore what happens when heart cells fail

7 hours ago

Through a grant from the United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation, Biomedical Engineering Associate Professor Naomi Chesler will embark upon a new collaborative research project to better understand ...

Stem cells from nerves form teeth

9 hours ago

Researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have discovered that stem cells inside the soft tissues of the tooth come from an unexpected source, namely nerves. These findings are now being published in the journal Nature and co ...

User comments