Chip identifies rhinoviruses as cause of asthma

June 18, 2018, Medical University of Vienna
Credit: Medical University of Vienna

MedUni Vienna has developed a method that can be used to identify individual rhinovirus strains ("cold viruses") as a cause of asthma. A "chip" is used to clearly identify certain virus strains by means of a blood test in the event of an asthma attack. This paves the way for developing a new vaccine which should protect against these particularly dangerous viruses.

Certain rhinoviruses are responsible for up to 80% of all asthma attacks. Viral asthma is particularly dangerous for children, who are subsequently more prone to develop allergies and lung diseases. However, infection with these cold viruses can also be life-threatening for people with chronic .

The rhinovirus chip developed at MedUni Vienna covers all the major groups and is able to identify the viral strain that has caused the asthma attack by simple blood testing. The current study identified the culprit rhinovirus strains by testing blood samples from children with severe .

This development of the chip is based on previous studies conducted by the working group led by Rudolf Valenta from MedUni Vienna's Center for Pathophysiology, Infectiology and Immunology. These studies identified the N-terminal peptide of the viral coat protein VP1 as a marker for all rhinovirus strains.

"At last we now know exactly which strains of rhinovirus cause such attacks," explains lead author Katarzyna Niespodziana. The precise identification of the asthma-triggering rhinoviruses is a further step towards the future development of a vaccine. The identified rhinovirus strains will become the main target of a "cold vaccine" currently in development. "Our work will focus on a vaccine which should protect against these asthma-triggering of virus," explains Niespodziana.

Explore further: Cold-related asthma attacks predictable with new test

More information: Katarzyna Niespodziana et al. PreDicta chip-based high resolution diagnosis of rhinovirus-induced wheeze, Nature Communications (2018). DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-04591-0

Related Stories

Cold-related asthma attacks predictable with new test

December 2, 2014
People who have asthma generally suffer worse with colds caused by rhinoviruses than other people do. There are also asthmatics and patients with the severe lung condition COPD in whom the cold virus can trigger serious flare-ups ...

Why we don't become immune to colds

March 8, 2012
A team of researchers at the MedUni Vienna has discovered why we never become immune to colds, and why we are able to keep catching them: the MedUni Vienna study, published in The FASEB Journal in the USA by Katarzyna Niespodziana ...

Scientists identify receptor for asthma-associated virus

April 6, 2015
Scientists funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, have identified a cellular receptor for rhinovirus C, a cold-causing virus that is strongly ...

Vaccine for many common cold viruses achievable

September 28, 2016
Scientists are making the case that a vaccine against rhinoviruses, the predominant cause of the common cold, is achievable.

Asthma and flu: a double whammy

June 4, 2018
Asthma and respiratory viruses don't go well together. Weakened by the common cold or the flu, a person suffering an asthma attack often responds poorly to emergency treatment; some must be hospitalized. This is especially ...

Recommended for you

Human Cell Atlas study reveals maternal immune system modifications in early pregnancy

November 14, 2018
The first Human Cell Atlas study of early pregnancy in humans has shown how the function of the maternal immune system is affected by cells from the developing placenta. Researchers from the Wellcome Sanger Institute, Newcastle ...

Researchers identify factors behind inflammation in immunodeficiency patients

November 14, 2018
Oregon State University researchers have discovered two key factors behind the intestinal inflammation that plagues people suffering from a disorder that affects their immune system.

Discovery suggests new route to fight infection, disease

November 14, 2018
New research reveals how a single protein interferes with the immune system when exposed to the bacterium that causes Legionnaires' disease, findings that could have broad implications for development of medicines to fight ...

New antibody breakthrough to lead the fight against cancer

November 14, 2018
Scientists at the University of Southampton have developed a new antibody that could hold the key to unlocking cancer's defence against the body's immune system.

Probiotics increase bone volume in healthy mice

November 13, 2018
A widely-used probiotic stimulates bone formation in young female mice, according to a study published November 13th in the journal Immunity. In response to treatment with Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG), other intestinal ...

An enzyme in immune cells plays essential role in host defense against tuberculosis

November 13, 2018
Using freshly resected lung tissue from 21 patients and two distinct mouse models, tuberculosis researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and the Africa Health Research Institute, or AHRI, have identified a protein ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.