Enterprise Europe Network (Profile: TRIT20190705002)

Short description of advertisement: 
An Italian R&D institution is looking for partners for a research cooperation on the influenza A virus

An Italian R&D institution with experience in investigating the influenza A virus (IAV), is looking for partners for research cooperation agreement. His project applies NMR (nuclear magnetic resonance) and MD (molecular dynamics simulation) to understand how IAV recognize at molecular level their cell targets. This knowledge will provide new chances to develop anti-viral drugs and will improve a predictive capacity on virus characteristics that will help forestall future influenza epidemics.

An Italian no-profit R&D institution is investigating the molecular mechanisms of how the protein hemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA) of the avian influenza A viruses recognizes the glycan host cell receptors contributing to the virus diffusion efficiency.

The avian influenza A virus infection begins through the binding of the viral recognition protein hemagglutinin (HA) to the glycoconjugates (glycans) of host cells. Literature data suggest that the HA of human-infective influenza subtypes preferentially recognize α(2,6) linked sialic acids (SAs) (human-like receptors), whereas the HA of avian-infective influenza sub-types preferentially recognizes α(2,3) linked SAs (avian-like receptors).  Viruses of avian origin infect and propagate between birds but rarely, and more dangerously, these zoonotic outbreaks become human adapted, carrying the threat of efficient transmission between humans; in this condition the virus is considered potentially pandemic.

Advanced NMR techniques (nuclear magnetic resonance), combined with molecular dynamic simulations (MD), are essential to characterize at the molecular level, the binding between the HA of selected subtypes (H1 and H7) and host glycan receptors. The long-term goal of this study is to understand the HA recognition mechanism, focusing on the ability of different HA forms to distinguish human from avian glycan receptors, enabling prediction of those mutations that could improve HA specificity. 

This investigation will be of interest to academic applied researchers and companies, to provide new strategy to develop antiviral drugs. More importantly, it contributes to a predictive capacity on the virus features and diffusion behavior. 

The Italian R&D institution is looking for research groups from universities, research institutes and/or companies for research cooperation agreement and to participate in European founded Research projects.



For more information please contact Enterprise Europe Network Latvia.

Contact person: 
Enterprise Europe Network Latvia
Contact languages: 
Perses Street 2, Riga, LV-1442, Latvia
info [at] een [dot] lv
Proposal valid till: 
Sunday, 2 August, 2020