The winners of National Institutes of Health’s 9th annual Design by Biomedical Undergraduate Teams (DEBUT) challenge developed simple and low-cost diagnostics and treatments for conditions such as tuberculosis, cervical cancer, birth defects, and onchocerciasis (river blindness).
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Using DNA origami as a virus-like scaffold, researchers designed an HIV-like particle that provokes a strong response from human immune cells grown in the lab. They are now testing this approach as a potential vaccine candidate in live animals, and adapting it to SARS-CoV-2, as well as other pathogens.
Most medicines work by binding to and blocking the effect of disease-causing molecules. Now, to accelerate the identification of potential new medicines, bioengineers have created a computer model that mimics the way molecules bind.
A first-of-its-kind study on molecular interactions by biomedical engineers will make it easier and more efficient for scientists to develop new medicines and other therapies for diseases such as cancer, HIV, and autoimmune diseases.