Researchers from the University of Georgia and Yale University have discovered the composition with the potential to be more effective than existing agents used for the treatment of painful blisters known as shingles - a disease that affects up to 30 percent of Americans, mostly elderly, and for which there are no specific therapies.
Many adults remember the fever, itchy blisters and possibly small scars left from them after they had been ill with chicken pox as a child, caused by varicella-zoster virus varicella-zoster, or VZV. Unfortunately, sometimes the memories come back, and what they are older, the stronger their revenge. VZV virus from the chickenpox child goes and hides in the nerves, reminding myself again about most often around the age of 60 years, sprinkling one side of the body a rash of blisters. Indicator of complications, including nerve pain that can last for months or years after an attack of depriving gone, also increases with age.
New and effective agent against zoster, which was called L-BHDA, can now change everything. Rights for the treatment of lichen have been licensed Pharmaceutical Company "Bukwang" preclinical research through the Research Fund of the University of Georgia and Yale University. "We need new options for medications with increased power and specificity that can treat the virus VZV, including the types that may be resistant to existing drugs," - said medicinal chemist Chung Chu (Chung Chu), Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences and one of the developers of L- BHDA.
Collaboration between Professor Chu and Professor of Pharmacology at Yale, Yung-Chi Cheng (Yung-Chi Cheng), ended with the creation of a set of antiviral compounds that are aimed at combating diseases such as HIV, herpes, hepatitis, and all kinds of cancer.
Professor Chu, who heads a research group at the College of drug discovery UGA, said that although there are common antiviral drugs that reduce the duration and pain of zoster, as well as a number of pain medications and topical creams to relieve long-term pain, they are effective only in a moderate degree. But researchers need more effective substances that act against the virus VZV.
"L-BHDA has the potential to be more effective than existing substances" - said Chu. He noted that the new composition tested in the laboratory and demonstrated in mice models by a research team led by Jennifer Moffat (Jennifer Moffat), Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, State University of Medicine in New York.
The vaccine for zoster, more suitable for the elderly since 2006, can reduce the likelihood of an attack depriving half. However, according to a recent analysis published in the journal "American Journal of Preventive Medicine", only a small percentage of older people receive a vaccination, mainly due to its high cost, lack of insurance reimbursement and shortage of supply.
It seems that immunization against chickenpox in childhood also protects against zoster, because the vaccine uses a weakened strain of the virus. However, the vaccine was introduced only in 1995, and while there is not enough data to provide a definitive conclusion.
Original: Sciencedaily Translation: M. Potter