When Dr. Stephen Smith of Seattle Children’s Research Institute came down with muscle aches, gastrointestinal distress and a sudden loss of smell in late February, he suspected he had COVID-19. The testing criteria had yet to be expanded to include individuals with Smith’s symptoms and so he did what many scientists with his expertise would do: he developed a way to test…
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The ISB-Swedish COVID-19 Immune Response Study has revealed new findings that suggest that treatments aimed at arresting the infection at the stage of moderate severity may be most effective. The symptoms of COVID-19 vary widely, from very mild to severe conditions requiring ICU care. Researchers comprehensively studied a large number of patients during the week following a COVID-19 diagnosis, and…
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Scientists at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle have shown that a potent antibody from a COVID-19 survivor interferes with a key feature on the surface of the coronavirus’s distinctive spikes and induces critical pieces of those spikes to break off in the process. The antibody — a tiny, Y-shaped protein that is one of the body’s premier weapons…
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SARS-CoV-2 is a betacoronavirus virus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic. Here, we determine the X-ray crystal structure of a potent neutralizing monoclonal antibody, CV30, isolated from a patient infected with SARS-CoV-2, in complex with the receptor binding domain. The structure reveals that CV30 binds to an epitope that overlaps with the human ACE2 receptor binding motif providing a structural basis…
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The dynamic genomic configurations and activities inside the nuclei of cells during mammalian embryonic development will be studied at a new UW Medicine research center. The National Institutes of Health announced Oct. 15 a $10 million, five-year grant for a 4-Dimensional Genomic Nuclear Organization of Mammalian Embryogenesis Center at the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle. The center is…
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An underlying motivation for the current development of vaccines against the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 is the premise that neutralizing antibodies will provide lasting protection from infection, drawn in part from experiences with other anti-viral vaccines. This desire to elicit neutralizing antibodies via a vaccine stems from the idea that antibodies should prevent infection if they block entry of the virus into…
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The gene-editing technique known as CRISPR has become the darling of the laboratory world, most recently garnering its discoverers a Nobel Prize. The method is also taking early steps into the clinic as the basis for experimental gene therapies, for example, for a genetic form of blindness. Several years ago, researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, debuted a variation…
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UW Medicine scientists are driving a bold, multi-partner experiment to stimulate the repair and regeneration of human kidney cells. A favorable outcome could jump-start a new therapy model for 850 million people worldwide who live with kidney disease. The National Institutes of Health recently announced the project’s funding: $4 million over five years. The study focuses on regenerating cells in the glomerulus…
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February 2020 might seem a lifetime ago, but that’s when UW Medicine researchers were the first to report community spread of the novel coronavirus in the United States. They knew the discovery had  massive implications, even if the general public couldn’t yet fathom them. But  what happened next was months, even years, in the making. An investment in pandemic preparedness…
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