A team of researchers in Scotland announced on the 24th that they had discovered a hybrid virus where influenza A and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), which causes seasonal flu, are fused. Provided by Yonhap News
Although there is concern about a ‘twindemic’ of infection at the same time as respiratory infectious diseases such as COVID-19 and seasonal flu in the winter, there is the possibility of a hybrid virus (hybrid) being created if the two types of virus have u infected in the study found that
A research team from the Scottish Medical Research Council (MRC) Ancient Virus Research Center – Glass Ancient Virus Research discovered a hybrid virus fused with influenza A and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and published it in the international scientific journal ‘Nature Microbiology’ on October 24 (local time) . The hybrid virus has been shown to have the ability to evade the human immune system and infect lung cells.
Both viruses are common in Korea from late autumn to winter. Influenza A became a seasonal disease after a global pandemic in 2009, infecting around 5 million people each year. RSV is a virus that causes acute respiratory infections such as pneumonia and bronchiolitis in children under 5 years of age.
It is known that it is common for a person to be infected with both viruses at the same time, but it is not clear what happens when these viruses are present in a single cell.
The researchers deliberately infected a single lung cell with both viruses at the same time. Instead of competing with each other, the two viruses fused together to form a palm hybrid virus.
The hybrid virus produced in this way had a greater ability to infect cells than the existing virus. This is because if lung cells have influenza A antibodies and adhere to the hybrid virus, they can infect cells using the RSV protein.
“The influenza A virus uses hybrid virus particles as a Trojan horse,” said Pablo Murcia, professor of veterinary medicine and life sciences at the University of Glasgow. It means that the hybrid virus can be used to infect cells that have antibodies, just as the Greeks did by hiding inside a horse and capturing Troy.
The hybrid virus can infect a wider range of lung cells as well as help evade the immune system. Influenza A infects the nose and throat, while RSV infects the respiratory tract and lungs.
Virologist Stephen Griffin, professor of medicine at the University of Leeds in the UK, said: “Further research is needed to prove that the hybrid virus affects human diseases. It is very likely to lead to disease,” he said. “Because there is the potential for hybrid viruses to arise, you should avoid being infected with multiple viruses,” he added.