Hepatitis A Replication: A virus causes a disease inside a body through its replication. Recently, scientists have discovered the entire replication process of Hepatitis A virus (HAV).
In their research, they found that Hepatitis A replication actually requires some specific interactions between human protein named ZCCHC14 and group of enzymes TENT4 poly(A) polymerases.
During the research, they also found that oral compound RG7834 having the capability to stop Hepatitis A replication and making it impossible to infect liver cells. The above research was conducted at UNC School of Medicine.
The above findings came out through the research have been published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences where they have also showed the effectiveness of against HAV.
The team of scientists further stated that they have a breakthrough in determining how the HAV replicates and the key factor that causes the disease.
They came to know how a small-molecule therapeutic halts the entire Hepatitis A replication and tends to reverse liver inflammation in the mouse model of Hepatitis A.
The Treatment for Hepatitis A Would Be Short Term: Lemon
This is what they said, “Our research demonstrates that targeting this protein complex with an orally delivered, small-molecule therapeutic halts viral replication and reverses liver inflammation in a mouse model of hepatitis A, providing proof-of-principle for antiviral therapy and the means to stop the spread of hepatitis A in outbreak settings,” they stated.
One of the researchers Lemon, who was also a part of the Walter Reed Army Medical Center research managed to develop the first inactivated HAV vaccine to be given to humans.
After the experiment, he said that his research on HAV has tapered off after the vaccine became available in the mid-1990s.
In the due course of time, researchers also turned their attention to other forms of Hepatitis like Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C which are very dangerous.
In this regard, Lemon said the only similarity between HAV and Hepatitis B and C is that they cause inflammation to the liver.
It was later confirmed that HAV doesn’t belong to the same virus family as Hepatitis B and C viruses.
If you look at the Hepatitis A outbreak, it’s been there for the last 6 years. The point to be noted here is that HAV is still there in spite of the availability of its vaccine since 2016.
On this Lemon stated that not everyone gets the vaccine and also the fact that HAV can still be there for a long period of time in the environment. Some examples where HAV can exist for long include water, our hands which mainly became the cause to surge the number of cases.
As per CDC, HAV has resulted as many as 44,000 HAV cases along with 27,000 hospitalizations and 400 deaths in the USA since 2016.
There have been several outbreaks happened in the last several years. One of them happened in the year 2017 mainly due to the illicit drug use that caused severe illness among 600 people. It also killed 200 others.
Just like HAV, researchers also found that Hepatitis B virus need TENT4A/B for its replication. On the basis of the experiments on humans, Lemon found that HAV requires human protein ZCCHC14 that mainly interacts with zinc and binds to RNA.
In general human biology, TENT4 has been found to be a part of the normal process of an RNA-modification during the cell growth. In the entire process, HAV has been found to hijack TENT4 and use it to replicate its own genome.
In his statement, Lemon asserted that treatment of Hepatitis A virus will be short term. He further that his team is still working on a few compounds that is going to hit the same target and without producing any toxic effects.
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