TWiV 207: Silk sheets and viral infidelity

November 18, 2012

silkworm cocoonHosts: Vincent Racaniello, Alan DoveMatt Frieman, and Kathy Spindler

Vincent, Alan, Matt, and Kathy review the use of silk to stabilize antibiotics and a viral vaccine, and an impaired-fidelity vaccine against SARS coronavirus.

Click arrow to play | Download TWiV 207 (76 MB .mp3, 106 min)

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  • Chris

    I was thinking of Dr. Racaniello dealing with his flooded house while watching this BBC film about the storm and the effect of social media, “Superstorm Sandy: Caught on Camera”, http://www.hulu.com/watch/427229

  • Joshpowellphd

    Vincent,
    A new twist is using spider silk and its long polymer chains by incorporating the amino acids Arg-Gly-Asp (RGD) within the protein, RGD enables stem cells to “latch on” using integrin receptors..in theory (and ultimate goal) is to create stem cells that elongate without differentiating so that one day spinal cord victims can be implanted with their own cells and “bridge” the break enabling repair.
    Spider silk link:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22727466

    One of many virus engineered RGD motifs engineered for multi-valent display to interact with stem cells (yes plugging one of my papers :-)
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22522012

    RGD within M13 virus particle, by Dr. Seung-Wuk Lee from Berkeley, considered the pioneer guy in the field.
    http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/la100226u

    While I’ve moved on to influenza for my postdoc I have a soft spot in my heart for exploiting viruses and proteins  for new uses (virus batteries, nanowires, etc.)

    Hope the house is dried out and listened with enthusiasm about the spider-silk story while on my Sunday run.

    Josh Powell

  • Lance Turtle

    Maybe the authors of the silk stabilization paper didn’t do plaque assays of the MMR vaccine because they had three different viruses in the assay? RT-qPCR would be easier to multiplex in this case I would have thought.