Volume 95 Issue 39 | p. 11 | Concentrates
Issue Date: October 2, 2017

Mutation in Zika virus protein linked to microcephaly

Single amino acid change made Zika virus more deadly to developing brain cells
Department: Science & Technology
Keywords: Infectious disease, Zika virus

Even though Zika virus was first identified in 1947, the infectious disease remained obscure until a 2015 outbreak in Central and South America. That’s when doctors noted a dramatic rise in infants with underdeveloped heads and brains (a condition known as microcephaly) born to women who were infected with the virus when pregnant. Now, researchers have found that mutation of a single amino acid in one of the Zika virus’s structural proteins, known as prM, . . .

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