Researchers have determined the crystal structure of the Ebola virus surface protein that binds host cells, they report online today in linkurl:Nature.;http://www.nature.com/nature/index.html The findings open the door to solving the long-standing mystery of the virus's mechanism of infection and designing drugs to combat the deadly hemorrhagic fever caused by linkurl:Ebola.;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/22846/ The paper is a "breakthrough," said linkurl:Lijun Rong,;http://www.uic.edu/depts/mcmi/faculty/rong/index.htm an associate professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago who was not involved in the study. People in the field have been looking for this structure for a long time, he emphasized, and the advance is "really exciting for us." Ebola virus is a "clever little thing," said Erica Ollmann Saphire, an immunologist at the Scripps Research Institute and main author of the paper. "It's a tiny stripped-down machine of just seven genes, yet it's able to utterly defeat most defenses we can come up with against it." linkurl:Ollmann...
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