Project

VIROFIGHT - H2020

Goal: VIROFIGHT – General-purpose virus-neutralizing engulfing shells
with modular target-specificity – is a research project in the field of virology and nanomedicine. The VIROFIGHT consortium proposes a radically new approach to fight viral infections, to help reduce the scale and sheer impact of viral infections, to address the problem of a lack of broadly applicable antiviral treatments, and to create means for combating emerging pathogens.
VIROFIGHT has received a funding of €3.88 million from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 899619.
https://www.virofight.eu/

Date: 1 June 2020 - 31 May 2024

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Project log

Adeline Paul
added an update
Are you interested in working on an exciting scientific topic in a great lab environment - and all of that in a great city...go ahead and apply!
TUM have an opening for a team leading postdoc from cell biology / mol biology / cellular biophysics with experience in mammalian cell culture, RNA/DNA seq etc, high-res microscopy skills advantageous. RT appreciated.
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
Could it soon be possible to capture viruses in minute DNA capsules? Learn more about the research of Hendrik Dietz in the latest issue of the TU München science magazine “Faszination Forschung” http://go.tum.de/483341 (from p.6, available in English and German)
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
With his calm way of explaining science in a clear and simple way, Prof Roman Jerala from Kemijski inštitut in Ljubljana, has made a name for himself in the Slovenian media over the last 2 years. As a scientist, he is committed to helping the public understand the complex situation we find ourselves in. In various media and also on his personal Twitter account (@rjerala), he always tries to inform the Slovenian population about the latest research in the pandemic. In a country with a rather low vaccination rate, this is not always easy. Now he has been nominated by the largest Slovenian newspaper “Delo” as one of the 10 personalities of 2021. You can read the article here: https://www.delo.si/delova-osebnost-leta/v-krizi-se-morajo-znanstveniki-izpostaviti/.
Congratulations Roman Jerala on this nomination and Thank You for your constant commitment to science!
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
RNA molecule binds to SARSCoV2 virus and blocks its entry into cells. The findings may help improve diagnostics and treatment of COVID19, and have been published by Julián Valero and Jørgen Kjems et al. in PNAS:
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
Roman Jerala from the National Institute of Chemistry (NIC) in Slovenia prese,nted VIROFIGHT in his lecture about New breakthrough therapies and technologies on horizon at the 10th Strategic Conference Value of innovation Digital transformation for informed decision-making in healthcare held last October.
The lecture can be watched on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gtazqd6LOPQ (starting from 1:20:25)
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
Adeline Paul
added an update
VIROFIGHT team has succeeded with a first proof of concept for its virus engulfing and neutralizing nanoshells. See the following press release for more information: https://virofight.eu/putting-viruses-in-quarantine/
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
Adeline Paul
added an update
VIROFIGHT has published its first two papers:
, co-authored by Roman Jerala from partner NIC (National Institute of Chemistry in Slovenia)
(see also previous post), from Coordinator Technology University of Munich, Germany, among authors Christian Sigl - Elena M Willner - Wouter Engelen - Jessica Kretzmann
 
Jessica Kretzmann
added a research item
Broad-spectrum antiviral platforms that can decrease or inhibit viral infection would alleviate many threats to global public health. Nonetheless, effective technologies of this kind are still not available. Here, we describe a programmable icosahedral canvas for the self-assembly of icosahedral shells that have viral trapping and antiviral properties. Programmable triangular building blocks constructed from DNA assemble with high yield into various shell objects with user-defined geometries and apertures. We have created shells with molecular masses ranging from 43 to 925 MDa (8 to 180 subunits) and with internal cavity diameters of up to 280 nm. The shell interior can be functionalized with virus-specific moieties in a modular fashion. We demonstrate this virus-trapping concept by engulfing hepatitis B virus core particles and adeno-associated viruses. We demonstrate the inhibition of hepatitis B virus core interactions with surfaces in vitro and the neutralization of infectious adeno-associated viruses exposed to human cells. Programmable triangular DNA blocks self-assemble into distinct icosahedral shells with specific geometry and apertures that can encapsulate viruses and decrease viral infection.
Adeline Paul
added an update
The Technical University of Munich, Coordinator of VIROFIGHT, will be presenting part of the project work today and tomorrow.
Monday 12 April
Session 2 - Biomedical Nanotechnology Chair: Thom LaBean
16:40 UTC / 18:40 CEST
Invited: Virus trapping with DNA origami shells
Jessica Kretzmann, Technical University of Munich, Germany
Tuesday 13 April
Session 1 - DNA Nanostructures: Semantomorphic Fabrication Co chairs: Ned Seeman and Hao Yan
14:55 UTC / 16:55 CEST
Invited: Programmable icosahedral shell system based on the principle of virus capsids
Christian Sigl, Technical University of Munich, Germany
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
Before the VIROFIGHT consortium starts sharing its own publications, we would like to share this article on a related topic (protein cages) co-authored by Roman Jerala from partner NIC (National Institute of Chemistry in Slovenia) :
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
For about 70% of all WHO listed viruses, no treatment is available & the antiviral drugs that exist must be applied very early to be effective. COVID-19 is only one such example. VIROFIGHT proposes a radical new line of antiviral technology for eradicating multiple viruses.
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
Roman Jerala: The approach the VIROFIGHT partners are taking is indeed futuristic as they explore a radically new technology for viral infection treatment. To achieve this technological target, the project combines supramolecular chemistry, molecular nano-engineering, and virology.
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
The VIROFIGHT partners develop and test prototypes of virus engulfing nanoshells which combine DNA origami, protein design and in vitro evolution. The interior will be coated with virus-specific molecules to exploit avidity effects for strong and specific virus binding.
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
The VIROFIGHT approach addresses the lack of a broadly applicable antiviral treatment that also reduces the risk of negative effects which may be elicited by current treatments used for virus neutralization as the antibody dependent enhancement through antiviral antibodies.
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
Instead of targeting virus-specific proteins or enzymes by small molecules as current antivirals do, the VIROFIGHT consortium will construct synthetic nano shells that can specifically recognize and engulf entire viruses to efficiently neutralize the pathogen.
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
All you need to know about VIROFIGHT - objectives, methods and partners - in one single document
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
Due to the COVID--19 pandemic, the kick-off meeting on 26 June 2020 was held online with no face-to-face group picture taken. Still, we think it's valuable to see the faces behind a project... So that's who we are!
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
VIROFIGHT can impact seemingly distant fields, such as the purification of food or drinking water from viral pathogens by trapping the pathogens in filters equipped with our virus binding systems.
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
VIROFIGHT scientific advancements and their future use will greatly impact the European technology sector by boosting the use of nanotechnology & molecular medicine. Our technology has a high translational potential for the treatment of major disease threats.
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
IMPACT 2: VIROFIGHT may be the foundation for a new ecosystem of antiviral drugs, with the potential to enable routine treatment of many types of viral infection with a drastic impact for European citizens and healthcare systems.
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
The VIROFIGHT project and its desired impacts:
IMPACT 1: The development of a radical new line of antiviral technology for eradicating multiple viruses. VIROFIGHT thus has an enormous potential for decreasing the burden for patients & saving costs to society.
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
The VIROFIGHT consortium wishes you a healthy, fulfilling and prosperous New Year!
We are looking forward to continuing fruitful collaborations and life-changing research & innovation for the future treatment of viral infections in 2021!
 
Adeline Paul
added an update
Viral infections affect millions of people every year and cause tremendous human suffering and costs to society. For approximately 70% of all WHO listed viruses, no treatment is available and the antiviral drugs that do exist must be applied very early after infection to be effective.
VIROFIGHT proposes a radically new approach to fight any viral infection, such as COVID19, HIV infection, influenza and hepatitis B.
 
Adeline Paul
added a project goal
VIROFIGHT – General-purpose virus-neutralizing engulfing shells
with modular target-specificity – is a research project in the field of virology and nanomedicine. The VIROFIGHT consortium proposes a radically new approach to fight viral infections, to help reduce the scale and sheer impact of viral infections, to address the problem of a lack of broadly applicable antiviral treatments, and to create means for combating emerging pathogens.
VIROFIGHT has received a funding of €3.88 million from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 899619.