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Health Agencies Update
April 28, 2004

Neutralizing the SARS Virus

JAMA. 2004;291(16):1951. doi:10.1001/jama.291.16.1951-e

Researchers at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases have shown that mice previously exposed to the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) virus are capable of halting the virus's replication upon reinfection (J Virol. 2004;78:3572-3577). The findings are encouraging to scientists who are trying to develop an effective vaccine against SARS.

Although the SARS virus does not make mice sick, it is able to infect and replicate in the cells lining mouse airways and lungs. The new study found that mice that are infected with SARS produce neutralizing antibodies against the virus, which then protected the mice from a subsequent infection.

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