UofG in fight against Zika

Issued: Tue, 09 Feb 2016 07:20:00 GMT

Scientists at the MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research (CVR) are carrying out world-leading research into the Zika virus, which was recently declared a global health emergency by the World Health Organisation. The virus has gained global notoriety in recent weeks due to its rapid spread through the Americas and its potential link with microcephaly which causes birth defects in infants.

Researchers at the Centre for Virus Research, which is part of the University of Glasgow's Institute of Infection, Immunity and Inflammation, are stepping up work on the Zika virus (Flaviviridae) with the help of £300,000 of government funding. 

The aim is to gain a greater understanding of the virus along with the ability to provide improved diagnostics, therapeutics and ultimately a vaccine. There is currently no treatment or vaccines available.

Dr Alain Kohl at the Centre for Virus Research is leading the work, along with Brazilian colleagues from Fiocruz in Recife, into how the Zika virus interacts with cells and to understand the virus’ genetics to support these efforts.