Oct 26, 2010 9:31 AM by Bea Karnes, News First 5

Researchers take new approach to block influenza

Imagine a day when we no longer have to battle the flu each year. It could be coming, thanks to a team of scientists and students at Brigham Young University.

David Busath, biophysics professor at BYU, and his team of researchers used a 16-ton magnet to give the virus a sort of MRI. They have worked with such precision, scientists can now see previously unknown details.

They are responsible for a major scientific breakthrough: a hole in the virus called the M2 Channel. "We're working on the structure of the protein with the hope of finding a drug that would block that protein...You stop this protein, and you keep the flu from reproducing," he says.

Busath says could happen within the next decade.

BYU's findings have been published in the journal Science.



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