Antibody protects against Zika virus in tests in mice | Science News


Support credible science journalism.

Subscribe to Science News today.

News in Brief

Antibody protects against Zika virus in tests in mice

3:47pm, November 7, 2016

ZIKA BLOCKER  A new therapy tested in mice curtails the effects of Zika virus (shown red in this transmission electron microscope image).

The battle against Zika may have some new firepower. A single dose of a human antibody called ZIKV-117 can shield mouse fetuses from the virus’s damaging effects, researchers report online November 7 in Nature.

In humans, Zika virus infection during pregnancy has been linked to a suite of birth defects including a condition known as microcephaly, which leaves babies with shrunken heads and brains (SN: 4/2/16, p. 26). It’s not yet clear whether a new treatment based on the antibody would work in humans (or even in monkeys). But if it does, ZIKV-117 could potentially offer pregnant women a way to defend themselves — and their babies — from a virus that tore through Brazil and has now encroached upon the United States.

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join the Society today or Log in.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More on Zika virus

From the Nature Index Paid Content