Variants of viruses, such as that causing COVID-19, can now be quickly studied in the laboratory, even before they emerge in nature and become a major public health challenge.
The University of Queensland, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, Monash University, and Queensland Health have developed a technology to manipulate viruses synthetically allowing rapid analysis and mapping of new potential virus variants.
UQ’s lead researcher Professor Alexander Khromykh said the technology was ideal for use during a global pandemic such as COVID-19.
This technique should give us the ability to answer questions about whether potential virus variants are susceptible to a particular drug or vaccine, even before they emerge in nature.”
Alexander Khromykh, Lead Researcher and Professor, University of Queensland
“Up until now, we’ve mostly just waited and reacted to viral variants as…