The process is known as antibody-dependent enhancement.

Antibody-dependent enhancement Some viruses’ ability to exploit the human body’s own defenses to improve their replication may be both a blessing and curse, according to the findings of a report conducted by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg College of Public Health . The process is known as antibody-dependent enhancement. Scientists believe antibody-dependent enhancement may allow the dengue virus to grow more rapidly in individuals who were previously contaminated and have partial but incomplete immunity to the virus.

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What the Scripps Study scientists found is certainly that CR6261 latches to the ‘stalk’ of the mushroom-like hemagglutinin particle, near where in fact the protein juts out from the viral layer, and that this binding area, called an epitope, may be the same in both H1 and H5 infections. The scientists then analyzed the genome of more than 5,000 different influenza viruses and discovered the epitope’s sequence is nearly similar in all of them, suggesting that this portion of the virus is much more highly conserved than the virus’s constantly mutating cap. This insight in to the way the CR6261 antibody binds to the virus’s structure is practical, the researchers say. It can help clarifies why the antibody may not be as powerful since it needs to be to attack influenza.