RESEARCHERS PROBE ENZYME THAT MAY LEAD TO NEW SARS DRUGS

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Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago and two other institutions have unraveled the structure of an important new drug target from the virus that causes SARS, severe acute respiratory syndrome. "By unlocking the three-dimensional structure of this enzyme -- known as papain-like-protease (PLpro) -- we now have a molecular road map to design new drugs that could potentially treat SARS-infected patients, or perhaps patients suffering from other SARS-related illnesses such as the common cold, bronchitis or pneumonia," said Andrew Mesecar, associate professor of pharmaceutical biotechnology in the UIC College of Pharmacy.

Innovations Report (http://www.innovations-report.com/html/reports/life_sciences/report-57634.html)