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Medicine Science

Breakthrough Portends Cure For the Common Cold 180

breadboy21 writes with this excerpt from the Independent: "Scientists have been able to show for the first time that the body's immune defenses can destroy the common cold virus after it has actually invaded the inner sanctum of a human cell, a feat that was believed until now to be impossible. The discovery opens the door to the development of a new class of antiviral drugs that work by enhancing this natural virus-killing machinery of the cell. Scientists believe the first clinical trials of new drugs based on the findings could begin within two to five years."
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Breakthrough Portends Cure For the Common Cold

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  • Atschoo (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @08:16AM (#34099478)

    Nature will find a way to give us another sneeze.

  • by i_ate_god ( 899684 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @08:19AM (#34099496)

    I look forward to seeing how this annoyance will evolve into a serious threat

  • NO! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by p51d007 ( 656414 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @08:28AM (#34099552)
    Unless you have a depressed immune system, I for one would NOT want this. I think part of the problem we have today with "people getting sick" is that at the first sniffle, we are off to the doctor, "demanding" an antibiotic or something to make us feel better. Doctors are partly to blame because they use to just give in and give it to us, even though most of the time, it wasn't a bacteria problem, but a virus problem. Now, a lot of antibiotics don't work, because the little bugs have gotten use to the stuff and don't work at all. Along with that, we don't eat enough raw food...everything these days is preprocessed. We don't eat raw cooked veggies, everything comes out of a can. We don't eat home-made bread, it comes from the store. We don't get enough "natural" products to protect us against invaders. And, as much of a pain in the butt as it is, we don't let ourselves "be sick". Sometimes letting the body fight off a cold, or small virus is better than trying to beat it. It helps our immune system "buck up" and keep us healthy the next time a little invader hits us. The other thing that just gets me ticked is people NOT WASHING THEIR HANDS when they use the restroom. I see it daily...people walk in, do their business, and walk out. H*ll, didn't your momma tell you to wash up after you do your business? Nice to see that some research has found those alcohol based hand cleaners are kind of worthless. Just use a little soap and warm water. Soapbox (no pun) mode off.... I'm an outside contractor who works around a large hospital...I see a LOT of garbage that people do daily...and scary...sometimes from the medical staff!
  • by mAineAc ( 580334 ) <mAineAc_____@hotmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @09:05AM (#34099806) Homepage
    Will this help in the effectiveness of antivirals for things like herpes, hepatitis and aids?
  • by Albanach ( 527650 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @09:05AM (#34099808) Homepage

    hope you'll be holding onto that cold for a while

    Actually, I'll be out exercising. []

  • Re:NO! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by atdt1991 ( 1069776 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @09:16AM (#34099882)

    It's possible that there is a good reason why that mechanism is not already more powerful.

    This is completely blind speculation. It's also possible, using similar blind speculation, that this pathway is the virus panacea we've been waiting for, and that it will ultimately prove to be the death of all human-susceptible viruses ever. Take THAT, HIV!

  • Re:NO! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GreatBunzinni ( 642500 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @09:16AM (#34099886)

    Nice rant. No, actually, completely irrelevant rant. This research shows how your body breaks down viruses and provides a potential means of stimulating this response. If anything, it makes it harder for viruses to adapt, because they're faced with exactly the same defence mechanism as without this boost, it's just more powerful so they are destroyed faster and have less time to adapt.

    You tried to label a comment as "completely irrelevant" but still you demonstrate you fail to understand the basic aspects pertaining to evolution. The thing is, "making it harder to adapt" does not, nor it can ever mean "making it impossible to adapt". They will adapt. It will only take a single virus to survive a stimulated response for it to replicate and propagate. With all the other unadapted virus out of the picture, the replicas of the adapted virus will in essence have an entire ecosystem at their disposal, where they will freely propagate, infect and replicate. Your poor understanding of this subject is what lead incompetent health officials and irresponsible patients to contribute to the development of the so called superbugs [], which are no laughing matter.

    But hey, keep spewing uneducated drivel and accuse those who demonstrate a better understanding of the subject as making "completely irrelevant rants". Meanwhile nature does work in spite of your lack of understanding.

  • by BarryJacobsen ( 526926 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @09:27AM (#34099958) Homepage

    for a crime which amounts to a homeless guy squatting in an unused home for a day or two

    You don't understand - his cell membrane is a different COLOR. They're TERRORISTS.

  • Great. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Morky ( 577776 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @09:28AM (#34099972)
    I can't wait for super-colds to arrive, thanks to this breakthrough. The common cold is innocuous enough, so why force it to evolve?
  • by Colonel Korn ( 1258968 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @09:45AM (#34100138)

    All the steroids are doing is suppressing your immune system. This is not a cure you are simply treating the symptoms and depending on how severe the infection is, may be the worst possible thing you can do.

    You might want to notice or respond to your GP, which argued fairly clearly that the only things worth treating in a cold are the symptoms.

  • Re:NO! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jayemji ( 1054886 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @10:23AM (#34100464)
    That reason could be that the metabolic expense is too high for someone who lives off 1000 Calories a day. Not really a problem for most 1st world folks nowadays...
  • Original paper? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by SlashBugs ( 1339813 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @10:27AM (#34100506)
    Can anyone find the original journal article? From a fairly quick PubMed search, James' group last published on TRIM21 back in 2008 []. There have been a few papers on TRIM21 in 2010, but they're not from James' institution and they don't share any authors with James' 2008 paper.

    Or is this being reported before the paper has been published? Do we know that it has even been properly reviewed?

    This is really cool if it's true and it's relevant to my research, so I'd love to see the original paper.
  • by radtea ( 464814 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @11:15AM (#34100962)

    The article makes no sense. It calls antibodies "war machines". Antibodies just bind proteins

    But you see, "war" is such a successful human activity, solving all kinds of problems that couldn't be solved any other way far more easily and at less human cost than any other method, that it is now used as a metaphor for any enterprise that people expect to be easily successful.

    Thus, the "War on Poverty"--which eliminated poverty--and the "War on Drugs"--which eliminated recreational drug use--and the "War on Terror"--which eliminated terrorism.

    As you can see, "war" is such a great metaphor for wildly successful enterprises that everyone wants to use it!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @11:32AM (#34101232)

    Common cold cured in 2-5 years... Zombie apocalypse to follow a few weeks later....

  • Re:NO! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by vux984 ( 928602 ) on Tuesday November 02, 2010 @11:43AM (#34101402)

    Sometimes letting the body fight off a cold, or small virus is better than trying to beat it. It helps our immune system "buck up" and keep us healthy the next time a little invader hits us. The other thing that just gets me ticked is people NOT WASHING THEIR HANDS when they use the restroom.

    To paraphrase:

    Its a good for the immune system to get some exposure to disease.
    Wash your hands to make sure you don't get exposed to disease.

    Both points might be valid, but it strikes me that they don't really belong right next to each other like that without some sort of explanation.

"If it's not loud, it doesn't work!" -- Blank Reg, from "Max Headroom"