Discipline: Biological Sciences
Subcategory: Cell and Molecular Biology
Michael A. Wallace - Alabama State University
Co-Author(s): Dieudonne Baganizi and Komal Vig, Alabama State University, Montgomery, AL
Human respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a crucial cause of respiratory tract infection and commonly affects the lungs and breathing passage. RSV can have life threating effects on elderly people, children, and people with compromised immune systems. There is currently no cure from an RSV infection so this research is critical to developing nanobiomedicine that can be used to stop the virus altogether. Key components of RSV are the fusion protein (F protein) and the attachment protein (G protein), which are both responsible for the attachment, fusion, budding, and spread of the virus. With the use of gold nanoparticles and an anti-RSV fusion peptide (T118), the virus can be effectively inhibited from binding to cells. In this study, carboxyl-Poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG)-gold nanoparticles of 10 nm core size and the anti-RSV peptide were conjugated using EDC/NHS chemistry to further hinder the virus from binding to cells. The functionalized nanoparticles were characterized by UV-Vis/DLS to confirm conjugation. Prior to use, the safety of the nanoparticles was evaluated by MTT assay. The gold nanoparticles showed less than 25% decrease in viability with up to 50 µg/ml as compared to untreated control cells. They were then evaluated for their effectiveness against RSV using immunofluorescence and plaque reduction assays. For this, HEp-2 cells were infected with a mixture of RSV (103 PFU/mL) and various concentrations of nanoparticles. Our results showed that gold nanoparticles were able to reduce RSV infection with about 50% inhibition obtained with 50 µg/ml T118-functionalized nanoparticles. These results highlight the potential of gold nanoparticles as antiviral agents that could be useful to stop the infection and spread of RSV.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): This work was supported by NSF-REU (DBI-1358923) to Komal Vig (PI); This work was supported by NSFCREST (HRD-1241701) to Shree Singh (PI). This work was supported by NSFCREST (HRD-1241701) to Dr. Shree Singh (PI).
Faculty Advisor: Komal Vig, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: In this research, I was responsible for cultivating cells and infecting them with various amounts of RSV. In addition, I was functionalized gold nanoparticles using a anti RSV peptide (T118) and adding that to infected cells to show how these nanoparticles inhibited RSV from healthy cells.