Cure for the common cold–and more

Cure for the common cold–and more November 3, 2010

British researchers have made a breakthrough discovery that may not only lead to a cure for the common cold but for viral diseases in general.  It hinges upon a discovery that the human immune system is even more comprehensive than anyone dreamed, that it can even work within cells:

In a dramatic breakthrough that could affect millions of lives, scientists have been able to show for the first time that the body’s immune defences 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.

The researchers said that many other viruses responsible for a range of diseases could also be targeted by the new approach. They include the norovirus, which causes winter vomiting, and rotavirus, which results in severe diarrhoea and kills thousands of children in developing countries.

Viruses are still mankind’s biggest killers, responsible for twice as many deaths as cancer, essentially because they can get inside cells where they can hide away from the body’s immune defences and the powerful antibiotic drugs that have proved invaluable against bacterial infections.However, a study by a team of researchers from the world-famous Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge has shown that this textbook explanation of the limits of the human immune system is wrong because anti-viral antibodies can in fact enter the cell with the invading virus where they are able to trigger the rapid destruction of the foreign invader.

“In any immunology textbook you will read that once a virus makes it into a cell, that is game over because the cell is now infected. At that point there is nothing the immune response can do other than kill that cell,” said Leo James, who led the research team.

But studies at the Medical Research Council’s laboratory have found that the antibodies produced by the immune system, which recognise and attack invading viruses, actually ride piggyback into the inside of a cell with the invading virus.

Once inside the cell, the presence of the antibody is recognised by a naturally occurring protein in the cell called TRIM21 which in turn activates a powerful virus-crushing machinery that can eliminate the virus within two hours – long before it has the chance to hijack the cell to start making its own viral proteins. “This is the last opportunity a cell gets because after that it gets infected and there is nothing else the body can do but kill the cell,” Dr James said.

“The antibody is attached to the virus and when the virus gets sucked inside the cell, the antibody stays attached, there is nothing in that process to make the antibody to fall off.

“The great thing about it is that there shouldn’t be anything attached to antibodies in the cell, so that anything that is attached to the antibody is recognised as foreign and destroyed.”

In the past, it was thought that the antibodies of the immune system worked entirely outside the cells, in the blood and other extra-cellular fluids of the body. Now scientists realise that there is another layer of defence inside the cells where it might be possible to enhance the natural anti-virus machinery of the body.

“The beauty of it is that for every infection event, for every time a virus enters a cell, it is also an opportunity for the antibody in the cells to take the virus out,” Dr James said.

“That is the key concept that is different from how we think about immunity. At the moment we think of professional immune cells such as T-cells [white blood cells] that patrol the body and if they find anything they kill it.

“This system is more like an ambush because the virus has to go into the cell at some point and every time they do this, this immune mechanism has a chance of taking it out,” he explained.

“It’s certainly a very fast process. We’ve shown that once it enters the cell it gets degraded within an hour or two hours, that’s very fast,” he added.

The study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, involved human cells cultured in the laboratory and will need to be replicated by further research on animals before the first clinical trials with humans.

One possibility is that the protein TRIM21 could be used in a nasal spray to combat the many types of viruses that cause the common cold. “The kind of viruses that are susceptible to this are the rhinoviruses, which cause the common cold, noravirus, which causes winter vomiting, rotavirus, which cause gastroenteritis. In this country these are the kind of viruses that people are most likely to be exposed to,” Dr James said.

via A cure for the common cold may finally be achieved as a result of a remarkable discovery in a Cambridge laboratory – Science, News – The Independent.

"Why do you care?"

Confessing to Plants
"I laughed at the caricature you felt required to create.To the substantial points. Of course ..."

Veggie Tales Reboot, but with the ..."
"Hello Curt Day, Thank you for responding.I believe in the explosive power of the New ..."

Both the Left and the Right ..."
"Christiane,What you want is what most people want: for people not to be in need. ..."

Both the Left and the Right ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


TRENDING AT PATHEOS Evangelical
What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • fws

    I am fairly confident that if we can get this to work , there will be unintended consequences and side effects. Sinful man can only tamper with creation in a way that has these sorts of results.

    This fact is not moral nor immoral. It is amoral in and of itsself.

    Earthly righeousness , aka “daily bread” is just as Aristotle says, it is about trade-offs, it is about chosing between the greater of two “goods”.

    Since our Lutheran Confessions inform Lutherans that “there is nothing that can be added to the Ethical System of Aristotle, I am surprised that Lutherans do not reason out earthly righeousness using him just as our Confessors did, and instead have returned to the scholastic position that morality = a conformity to a Divine Moral Code that requires faith in god.

    True morality, as the opposite of sin, remains alone, invisible faith. In Christ, alone.

    This may seem way off thread. But I am trying to demonstrate that the Lutheran Law and Gospel can, and should , be seen in everything .

  • fws

    I am fairly confident that if we can get this to work , there will be unintended consequences and side effects. Sinful man can only tamper with creation in a way that has these sorts of results.

    This fact is not moral nor immoral. It is amoral in and of itsself.

    Earthly righeousness , aka “daily bread” is just as Aristotle says, it is about trade-offs, it is about chosing between the greater of two “goods”.

    Since our Lutheran Confessions inform Lutherans that “there is nothing that can be added to the Ethical System of Aristotle, I am surprised that Lutherans do not reason out earthly righeousness using him just as our Confessors did, and instead have returned to the scholastic position that morality = a conformity to a Divine Moral Code that requires faith in god.

    True morality, as the opposite of sin, remains alone, invisible faith. In Christ, alone.

    This may seem way off thread. But I am trying to demonstrate that the Lutheran Law and Gospel can, and should , be seen in everything .

  • bunnycatch3r

    @fws
    Sorry Doctor, my Lutheran perspective of Law and Gospel prevents me from enjoying any advancements in science. ” lol~Yours is an interesting perspective. But judge whether or not mine is more Lutheran. “Glory be to God for bringing about this scientific advancement through men and women honoring their vocations.” 😉

  • bunnycatch3r

    @fws
    Sorry Doctor, my Lutheran perspective of Law and Gospel prevents me from enjoying any advancements in science. ” lol~Yours is an interesting perspective. But judge whether or not mine is more Lutheran. “Glory be to God for bringing about this scientific advancement through men and women honoring their vocations.” 😉

  • fws

    Bunnycatcher @2

    Nope. You missed my point silly wabbit.

    God works all his Fatherly Goodness in, with and under sinful Old Adams everywhere exactly as he used the lawless Judge in luke 18 to do justice by nagging him with a conscience widowed from love.

    This is all goodness and mercy.

    Imagine, since this is true, how much more that same Loving Father will deal wonderfully with his Elect.

    Will faith be found when the Son of Man returns? This too will depend entirely on God and will also be his loving and Fatherly work in us.

    We can trust God to provide us all good things, and as you said give thanks to him for all these things rather than say that earthly righteousness, apart from faith, is pointless.

    It so is not.

  • fws

    Bunnycatcher @2

    Nope. You missed my point silly wabbit.

    God works all his Fatherly Goodness in, with and under sinful Old Adams everywhere exactly as he used the lawless Judge in luke 18 to do justice by nagging him with a conscience widowed from love.

    This is all goodness and mercy.

    Imagine, since this is true, how much more that same Loving Father will deal wonderfully with his Elect.

    Will faith be found when the Son of Man returns? This too will depend entirely on God and will also be his loving and Fatherly work in us.

    We can trust God to provide us all good things, and as you said give thanks to him for all these things rather than say that earthly righteousness, apart from faith, is pointless.

    It so is not.

  • Porcell

    Actually, we can thank God for a cosmos that is rational and at the physical level reveals truths that have vastly improved the lives of people. Should this discovery lead to the cure of the common cold and prevent lethal viruses from destroying lives we ought to be very thankful Dr. James and his team at the Cambridge University molecular biology laboratory.

    To argue that Lutheran theology opposes this science would be luddite ignorance.

  • Porcell

    Actually, we can thank God for a cosmos that is rational and at the physical level reveals truths that have vastly improved the lives of people. Should this discovery lead to the cure of the common cold and prevent lethal viruses from destroying lives we ought to be very thankful Dr. James and his team at the Cambridge University molecular biology laboratory.

    To argue that Lutheran theology opposes this science would be luddite ignorance.

  • fws

    porcell

    lutheran theology in no way opposes these gifts. they praise them in their doctrine of vocation.

  • fws

    porcell

    lutheran theology in no way opposes these gifts. they praise them in their doctrine of vocation.

  • FWS (@1), I believe you go too far.

    The Confessions say that “All Scripture ought to be distributed into these two principal topics, the Law and the promises” (Apology, Art. IV). Do you see reason to apply this framework, though, to everything outside of Scripture as well? I’m sure at some level it’s possible. But at some point it gets a bit silly. Is a toothbrush Law or Gospel?

    “I am fairly confident that if we can get this to work, there will be unintended consequences and side effects.” Again, this is probably a safe bet for most scientific advances, especially somewhat fundamental shifts like this one. But is it even true? Again, what are the “unintended consequences and side effects” of a toothbrush, and how does it reflect man’s sinfulness? And is that a useful, or even a reasonable, question?

    Moreover, you appear to be only applying the Law here, anyhow. What about God’s promises? Do they not also apply? Is every good gift from our heavenly Father, who works all things to our good — including medical advances — to be greeted with pessimism about “unintended consequences and side effects”? Or is it, rather, to be greeted with thankfulness and joy that God abundantly gives us good gifts?

  • FWS (@1), I believe you go too far.

    The Confessions say that “All Scripture ought to be distributed into these two principal topics, the Law and the promises” (Apology, Art. IV). Do you see reason to apply this framework, though, to everything outside of Scripture as well? I’m sure at some level it’s possible. But at some point it gets a bit silly. Is a toothbrush Law or Gospel?

    “I am fairly confident that if we can get this to work, there will be unintended consequences and side effects.” Again, this is probably a safe bet for most scientific advances, especially somewhat fundamental shifts like this one. But is it even true? Again, what are the “unintended consequences and side effects” of a toothbrush, and how does it reflect man’s sinfulness? And is that a useful, or even a reasonable, question?

    Moreover, you appear to be only applying the Law here, anyhow. What about God’s promises? Do they not also apply? Is every good gift from our heavenly Father, who works all things to our good — including medical advances — to be greeted with pessimism about “unintended consequences and side effects”? Or is it, rather, to be greeted with thankfulness and joy that God abundantly gives us good gifts?

  • DonS

    God created in our bodies a wondrous system of defense against disease. Our medicine is most effective when it works in concert with this natural defense system, rather than overriding it. This sounds like a promising line of research to me.

  • DonS

    God created in our bodies a wondrous system of defense against disease. Our medicine is most effective when it works in concert with this natural defense system, rather than overriding it. This sounds like a promising line of research to me.

  • fws

    todd @ 6

    “Moreover, you appear to be only applying the Law here, anyhow.”

    ah. you fully get it!

    Yes law and gospel applies to EVERYTHING. it is not just a theological construct.

    In the earthly kingdom we put everything that can be seen and done, most especially the highest visible virtue and righeousness , that , by the way truly pleases God and is providenced by him. and we especially put in that category everything we can see and do in church in our bodies.

    These things ARE true righteousness that pleases God. and he promises earthly blessings to those who do these things (in this case provide “daily bread” and love in the form of life saving research). But they will perish with the earth as that “flesh/body” that Romans 8 places these things in, along with all who put their faith in any of this. especially he churchly stuff like the administration of word and sacrament.

    We do this ESPECIALLY because these ARE good things and are truly virtuous and righeous.

    And so we do all this, not to distinguish sin from goodness, but so that there is only ONE item in the category of the Heavenly Kingdom (or the left handed kingdom for thoses who insist on non biblical and n0n confessional inovation in terms). That one thing is invisible faith. alone. in christ . alone.

    So flesh/body vs spirit/Spirit should not be thought of as a move from vice to virtue. It is from virtue and religion and spirit-uality and true goodness, to that completely invisible and meaningless-on-earth Righteousness of faith alone in christ alone.

  • fws

    todd @ 6

    “Moreover, you appear to be only applying the Law here, anyhow.”

    ah. you fully get it!

    Yes law and gospel applies to EVERYTHING. it is not just a theological construct.

    In the earthly kingdom we put everything that can be seen and done, most especially the highest visible virtue and righeousness , that , by the way truly pleases God and is providenced by him. and we especially put in that category everything we can see and do in church in our bodies.

    These things ARE true righteousness that pleases God. and he promises earthly blessings to those who do these things (in this case provide “daily bread” and love in the form of life saving research). But they will perish with the earth as that “flesh/body” that Romans 8 places these things in, along with all who put their faith in any of this. especially he churchly stuff like the administration of word and sacrament.

    We do this ESPECIALLY because these ARE good things and are truly virtuous and righeous.

    And so we do all this, not to distinguish sin from goodness, but so that there is only ONE item in the category of the Heavenly Kingdom (or the left handed kingdom for thoses who insist on non biblical and n0n confessional inovation in terms). That one thing is invisible faith. alone. in christ . alone.

    So flesh/body vs spirit/Spirit should not be thought of as a move from vice to virtue. It is from virtue and religion and spirit-uality and true goodness, to that completely invisible and meaningless-on-earth Righteousness of faith alone in christ alone.

  • bunnycatch3r

    @fws
    You’ve demonstrated how this scientific breakthrough can be seen through the Law (unintended consequences) but does tODD demonstrate how it can be perceived through Gospel i.e., “with thankfulness and joy that God abundantly gives us good gifts?”

  • bunnycatch3r

    @fws
    You’ve demonstrated how this scientific breakthrough can be seen through the Law (unintended consequences) but does tODD demonstrate how it can be perceived through Gospel i.e., “with thankfulness and joy that God abundantly gives us good gifts?”

  • fws

    silly wabbit @ 9

    I hope you dont mind my jest at your moniker. It is in affectionate fun. sincerely ok?

    you entirely miss my point. law and gospel is to keep us from doing exactly what you just did. to confuse grace with gift.

    sure these earthly things are all gifts of God. I agree. But grace is alone in Christ alone. who he is, what he did and why he did it. alone. and faith which trusts in that. alone.

  • fws

    silly wabbit @ 9

    I hope you dont mind my jest at your moniker. It is in affectionate fun. sincerely ok?

    you entirely miss my point. law and gospel is to keep us from doing exactly what you just did. to confuse grace with gift.

    sure these earthly things are all gifts of God. I agree. But grace is alone in Christ alone. who he is, what he did and why he did it. alone. and faith which trusts in that. alone.

  • Porcell

    FWS: Sinful man can only tamper with creation in a way that has these sorts of results.

    You suggest here that Dr. James with his Cambridge group is “tampering” with creation on an unexplained assumption of unintended consequences. This is the sort of ideological religious thinking that gives religion a bad name. Science is not above criticism, hough it has to have some rational basis.

  • Porcell

    FWS: Sinful man can only tamper with creation in a way that has these sorts of results.

    You suggest here that Dr. James with his Cambridge group is “tampering” with creation on an unexplained assumption of unintended consequences. This is the sort of ideological religious thinking that gives religion a bad name. Science is not above criticism, hough it has to have some rational basis.

  • fws

    porcell. you entirely missed my point. the research done is entirely praiseworthy.

  • fws

    porcell. you entirely missed my point. the research done is entirely praiseworthy.

  • trotk

    tODD, a toothbrush is clearly Law. Or else my dentist needs to rethink how he exhorts me. Also, the evidence that my pagan neighbor can use his toothbrush as effectively as me points to the fact that it must be Law. Thus, toothbrushes will perish one day.

  • trotk

    tODD, a toothbrush is clearly Law. Or else my dentist needs to rethink how he exhorts me. Also, the evidence that my pagan neighbor can use his toothbrush as effectively as me points to the fact that it must be Law. Thus, toothbrushes will perish one day.

  • bunnycatch3r

    @fws
    My moniker was originally designed to incite fear (over a chess board) but I’ve come to accept that (as an unintended consequence) it inspires a completely different affect.

    you entirely miss my point. law and gospel is to keep us from doing exactly what you just did. to confuse grace with gift.

    null program.
    cancel.
    running everything back to zero.

    Please correct me if I am mistaken but, as I undersand it, the word “grace” χάρις is strongly associtated with “gift”.

  • bunnycatch3r

    @fws
    My moniker was originally designed to incite fear (over a chess board) but I’ve come to accept that (as an unintended consequence) it inspires a completely different affect.

    you entirely miss my point. law and gospel is to keep us from doing exactly what you just did. to confuse grace with gift.

    null program.
    cancel.
    running everything back to zero.

    Please correct me if I am mistaken but, as I undersand it, the word “grace” χάρις is strongly associtated with “gift”.

  • Porcell

    FWS :I am fairly confident that if we can get this [Dr. James research] to work , there will be unintended consequences and side effects. Sinful man can only tamper with creation in a way that has these sorts of results.

    This fact is not moral nor immoral. It is amoral in and of its[s]elf.

    How else might one interpret this than as a severe criticism of Dr. James’ work, whatever your ex post facto remarks?

  • Porcell

    FWS :I am fairly confident that if we can get this [Dr. James research] to work , there will be unintended consequences and side effects. Sinful man can only tamper with creation in a way that has these sorts of results.

    This fact is not moral nor immoral. It is amoral in and of its[s]elf.

    How else might one interpret this than as a severe criticism of Dr. James’ work, whatever your ex post facto remarks?

  • fws

    bunny at 14

    In generic terms grace can mean alot of things can´t it? “He was very graceful”. Gift is a root meaning of grace . You are right sir bunny.

    In biblical terms Grace means something more specific. And when it is contrasted with something else as St Paul does, then it takes on an even narrower meaning in that context.

    So it depends. If the context is religious and christian, then grace means, alone, Christ and what he did. as in “we are saved by grace through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast. ”

    I hope that helps bunny (hope calling you bunny is not offensive. I don´t know your name…).

    Here is Luther´s preface to his 1545 translation of St Pauls Epistle to the Romans where he explains the difference between grace and gift in the Bible outside of that more narrow Pauline contrast….

    http://www.ccel.org/l/luther/romans/pref_romans.html

  • fws

    bunny at 14

    In generic terms grace can mean alot of things can´t it? “He was very graceful”. Gift is a root meaning of grace . You are right sir bunny.

    In biblical terms Grace means something more specific. And when it is contrasted with something else as St Paul does, then it takes on an even narrower meaning in that context.

    So it depends. If the context is religious and christian, then grace means, alone, Christ and what he did. as in “we are saved by grace through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast. ”

    I hope that helps bunny (hope calling you bunny is not offensive. I don´t know your name…).

    Here is Luther´s preface to his 1545 translation of St Pauls Epistle to the Romans where he explains the difference between grace and gift in the Bible outside of that more narrow Pauline contrast….

    http://www.ccel.org/l/luther/romans/pref_romans.html

  • fws

    todd @ 6

    You . are. brilliant. !.

    You made me realize what I had not before. Now I understand why our Lutheran confessions had several modes of expressing the distinction between Law and Gospel.

    You are so right! We can think that Law and Gospel is a form of bipolar systematic theology that tells to classify everything in the bible under one of the two categories. So it´s usefulness is pretty much seemingly limited to theological stuff and is about faith in this way of thinking.

    This is why often Lutherans are deer-blinded-by-headlights, when evangelicals and roman catholics and other moralists hit us with arguments about sanctification and why we have trouble transferring law and gospel to the practical and everyday lives of christians.

    So the Two Kingdoms and Two Kinds of Righeousness teachings are the Law and Gospel methods that the Old Lutherans used to apply Law and Gospel to our daily lives.

    I get that now. Thanks!

  • fws

    todd @ 6

    You . are. brilliant. !.

    You made me realize what I had not before. Now I understand why our Lutheran confessions had several modes of expressing the distinction between Law and Gospel.

    You are so right! We can think that Law and Gospel is a form of bipolar systematic theology that tells to classify everything in the bible under one of the two categories. So it´s usefulness is pretty much seemingly limited to theological stuff and is about faith in this way of thinking.

    This is why often Lutherans are deer-blinded-by-headlights, when evangelicals and roman catholics and other moralists hit us with arguments about sanctification and why we have trouble transferring law and gospel to the practical and everyday lives of christians.

    So the Two Kingdoms and Two Kinds of Righeousness teachings are the Law and Gospel methods that the Old Lutherans used to apply Law and Gospel to our daily lives.

    I get that now. Thanks!

  • fws

    porcell at 15

    read my comment under that other thread about election post mortem where you chose to address my comment made here…. I hope that will clear things up for you friend.

  • fws

    porcell at 15

    read my comment under that other thread about election post mortem where you chose to address my comment made here…. I hope that will clear things up for you friend.

  • fws

    trotk @ 13

    and the real proof that it is law and earthly kingdom stuff and not heavenly kingdom stuff is that it is not invisible faith in Christ.

  • fws

    trotk @ 13

    and the real proof that it is law and earthly kingdom stuff and not heavenly kingdom stuff is that it is not invisible faith in Christ.

  • WebMonk

    “Cure for the common cold”. Uh huh. Not even close, though this discovery will very likely help in fighting all sorts of viral infections.

    Right now, the common cold is around because the body doesn’t immediately recognize it and fight it when the viri first come in. And not only that, but an antibody needs to be already attached to the virus before it enters the cell for the cell to destroy the virus. This breakthrough doesn’t change either of those things, and so any new anti-viral technologies based on this would still suffer from the same limitations.

    Will it help? Absolutely! But it is a far, far, far, far, far cry from being a cure for the common cold (or virus-based sicknesses in general).

    Note that nowhere do any of the doctors quoted in the article say anything about this being a cure for the common cold (they know it’s obviously not), but rather the headline for the article talks about this being a “cure”. Actually, as far as I can tell, there’s nothing at all in the article itself to suggest this is a cure for colds – that part is pure headline hype.

  • WebMonk

    “Cure for the common cold”. Uh huh. Not even close, though this discovery will very likely help in fighting all sorts of viral infections.

    Right now, the common cold is around because the body doesn’t immediately recognize it and fight it when the viri first come in. And not only that, but an antibody needs to be already attached to the virus before it enters the cell for the cell to destroy the virus. This breakthrough doesn’t change either of those things, and so any new anti-viral technologies based on this would still suffer from the same limitations.

    Will it help? Absolutely! But it is a far, far, far, far, far cry from being a cure for the common cold (or virus-based sicknesses in general).

    Note that nowhere do any of the doctors quoted in the article say anything about this being a cure for the common cold (they know it’s obviously not), but rather the headline for the article talks about this being a “cure”. Actually, as far as I can tell, there’s nothing at all in the article itself to suggest this is a cure for colds – that part is pure headline hype.

  • Porcell

    WebMonk: Note that nowhere do any of the doctors quoted in the article say anything about this being a cure for the common cold (they know it’s obviously not),

    Dr, James, of the Cambridge Laboratory of Molecular Biology, quoted in the Independent Science article:

    Dr James said. “The kind of viruses that are susceptible to this are the rhinoviruses, which cause the common cold, noravirus, which causes winter vomiting, rotavirus, which cause gastroenteritis. In this country these are the kind of viruses that people are most likely to be exposed to,” Dr James said.
    “This is a way of boosting all the antibodies you’d be naturally making against the virus. The advantage is that you can use that one drug against potentially lots of viral infections.”
    “We can think of administering these drugs as nasal sprays and inhalers rather than taking pills… It could lead to an effective treatment for the common cold,” he said. “The beauty of this system is that you give the virus no chance to make its own proteins to fight back. It is a way for the cell to get rid of the virus and stay alive itself.”
    Sir Greg Winter, deputy director of the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, said: “Antibodies are formidable molecular war machines; it now appears that they can continue to attack viruses within cells. This research is not only a leap in our understanding of how and where antibodies work, but more generally in our understanding of immunity and infection.” [emphasis mine]

  • Porcell

    WebMonk: Note that nowhere do any of the doctors quoted in the article say anything about this being a cure for the common cold (they know it’s obviously not),

    Dr, James, of the Cambridge Laboratory of Molecular Biology, quoted in the Independent Science article:

    Dr James said. “The kind of viruses that are susceptible to this are the rhinoviruses, which cause the common cold, noravirus, which causes winter vomiting, rotavirus, which cause gastroenteritis. In this country these are the kind of viruses that people are most likely to be exposed to,” Dr James said.
    “This is a way of boosting all the antibodies you’d be naturally making against the virus. The advantage is that you can use that one drug against potentially lots of viral infections.”
    “We can think of administering these drugs as nasal sprays and inhalers rather than taking pills… It could lead to an effective treatment for the common cold,” he said. “The beauty of this system is that you give the virus no chance to make its own proteins to fight back. It is a way for the cell to get rid of the virus and stay alive itself.”
    Sir Greg Winter, deputy director of the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, said: “Antibodies are formidable molecular war machines; it now appears that they can continue to attack viruses within cells. This research is not only a leap in our understanding of how and where antibodies work, but more generally in our understanding of immunity and infection.” [emphasis mine]

  • WebMonk

    Porcell, I hate to break it to you, but “effective treatment” doesn’t equal “cure”. Similar sorts of concepts but quite distinct.

    Reading comprehension, it ain’t jest fer dem der co-legiate edjumacated folk.

  • WebMonk

    Porcell, I hate to break it to you, but “effective treatment” doesn’t equal “cure”. Similar sorts of concepts but quite distinct.

    Reading comprehension, it ain’t jest fer dem der co-legiate edjumacated folk.

  • Pete

    I’m sticking with chicken soup as the cure for the common cold. Though, (fws, bunnycatchr) as a primarily Jewish remedy, is it more O.T. (law) than N.T.?

  • Pete

    I’m sticking with chicken soup as the cure for the common cold. Though, (fws, bunnycatchr) as a primarily Jewish remedy, is it more O.T. (law) than N.T.?

  • Porcell

    WebMonk, at 22, you’re playing with words; with your usual pretense of being some sort of a scientific whiz, you claimed that the scientists nowhere said anything about a cure for the cold. Dr, James referred to an effective treatment for colds, which by any verbal standard is another way of referring to a cure.

  • Porcell

    WebMonk, at 22, you’re playing with words; with your usual pretense of being some sort of a scientific whiz, you claimed that the scientists nowhere said anything about a cure for the cold. Dr, James referred to an effective treatment for colds, which by any verbal standard is another way of referring to a cure.

  • fws

    webmonk. @ 22

    stop being elite and start being elitist .

  • fws

    webmonk. @ 22

    stop being elite and start being elitist .

  • WebMonk, I’m afraid I don’t see where you’re coming from here. What, to you, is the difference between an “effective treatment” and a “cure”? I could think of some aspects that might distinguish the terms, but I could also think of situations in which the two would be considered synonymous. If it’s important that we know the difference as you understand it, could you explain it to us?

    I’m also afraid your snarky “reading comprehension” rejoinder may have been a bit hastily discharged. You did say (@20) “the headline for the article talks about this being a ‘cure'”, but as you can see, what the headline actually talks about is the fact that, well, “A cure for the common cold may finally be achieved as a result of a remarkable discovery in a Cambridge laboratory” (my emphasis).

    FWS (@25), I have no idea what that means.

  • WebMonk, I’m afraid I don’t see where you’re coming from here. What, to you, is the difference between an “effective treatment” and a “cure”? I could think of some aspects that might distinguish the terms, but I could also think of situations in which the two would be considered synonymous. If it’s important that we know the difference as you understand it, could you explain it to us?

    I’m also afraid your snarky “reading comprehension” rejoinder may have been a bit hastily discharged. You did say (@20) “the headline for the article talks about this being a ‘cure'”, but as you can see, what the headline actually talks about is the fact that, well, “A cure for the common cold may finally be achieved as a result of a remarkable discovery in a Cambridge laboratory” (my emphasis).

    FWS (@25), I have no idea what that means.

  • WebMonk

    tODD, I was quoting Dr. Veith’s blog title when I quoted “cure for the common cold”, not the news article. It’s part of a fairly typical pattern of headline exaggeration. The doctor uses the term “effective treatment”, and the headline bumps that up to a cure maybe being achieved, and then Dr. Veith bumped that up still further by just stating “cure for the common cold – and more”.

    Just like all bulls are cow but not all cows are bulls, all cures are effective treatments but not all effective treatments are cures.

    At the moment I happen to be very familiar with treatments for cancer, and several different types of treatments were described as “very effective” – they usually slow down the cancer advance by four or five years.

    Same thing for a lot of other treatments, I’m thinking of an article I read in the Journal of Clinical Oncology which talked about “effective treatment” which was 30% more effective in treating a particular type of cancer that the previous most effective treatment.

    Like I said, they’re similar sorts of concepts, but quite distinct. In this case, Dr. James is using lots of terms like “if” and “opportunity to” and “chance of” when describing the newly discovered defense techniques. That’s not the way a cure is talked about, but it certainly does sound like an effective treatment, maybe something like a 30% improvement over existing treatments!

  • WebMonk

    tODD, I was quoting Dr. Veith’s blog title when I quoted “cure for the common cold”, not the news article. It’s part of a fairly typical pattern of headline exaggeration. The doctor uses the term “effective treatment”, and the headline bumps that up to a cure maybe being achieved, and then Dr. Veith bumped that up still further by just stating “cure for the common cold – and more”.

    Just like all bulls are cow but not all cows are bulls, all cures are effective treatments but not all effective treatments are cures.

    At the moment I happen to be very familiar with treatments for cancer, and several different types of treatments were described as “very effective” – they usually slow down the cancer advance by four or five years.

    Same thing for a lot of other treatments, I’m thinking of an article I read in the Journal of Clinical Oncology which talked about “effective treatment” which was 30% more effective in treating a particular type of cancer that the previous most effective treatment.

    Like I said, they’re similar sorts of concepts, but quite distinct. In this case, Dr. James is using lots of terms like “if” and “opportunity to” and “chance of” when describing the newly discovered defense techniques. That’s not the way a cure is talked about, but it certainly does sound like an effective treatment, maybe something like a 30% improvement over existing treatments!

  • fws

    todd @26 to FWS @ 25

    I don´t know what I mean either. “elite” “elite-ist”.

    According to porcell, we don´t want our elected officials to be either of those two do we? That would be a bad thing! The model we want is Sarah Palin. a regular person. the girl next door. from the heartland. yeah. that´s it.

    and that also, that is the problem with liberals like you and webmonk. you insist on education and reading comprehension and grammar and stuff like that that makes you that ‘e” thang. That is very bad Todd. You need to change.

  • fws

    todd @26 to FWS @ 25

    I don´t know what I mean either. “elite” “elite-ist”.

    According to porcell, we don´t want our elected officials to be either of those two do we? That would be a bad thing! The model we want is Sarah Palin. a regular person. the girl next door. from the heartland. yeah. that´s it.

    and that also, that is the problem with liberals like you and webmonk. you insist on education and reading comprehension and grammar and stuff like that that makes you that ‘e” thang. That is very bad Todd. You need to change.

  • WebMonk

    Wow, of course I had to make a disjointed comment like that (@27) in a comment thread where I made a snarky comment about reading comprehension!!! In my defense that particular post was put together over the course of four editing sessions, was changed significantly when I saw tODD’s comment, and wasn’t submitted until the next morning at which point it was further edited.

    First, I do apologize for the snarky comment. I’ve been told many times in the last four months about “cures” for cancer, and it has been a bit of a sore point because when people say “cure” they are just ignorant about some treatment which is merely more effective than previous treatments.

    Porcell, you just happened to step into a sore spot and I made a mean snipe. I’m sorry about that.

    tODD 26, during the edits I messed up my reply to you. It’s not correct. If you’re really interested I can remake it to actually be comprehensible. I doubt it’s worth it though. 😀

  • WebMonk

    Wow, of course I had to make a disjointed comment like that (@27) in a comment thread where I made a snarky comment about reading comprehension!!! In my defense that particular post was put together over the course of four editing sessions, was changed significantly when I saw tODD’s comment, and wasn’t submitted until the next morning at which point it was further edited.

    First, I do apologize for the snarky comment. I’ve been told many times in the last four months about “cures” for cancer, and it has been a bit of a sore point because when people say “cure” they are just ignorant about some treatment which is merely more effective than previous treatments.

    Porcell, you just happened to step into a sore spot and I made a mean snipe. I’m sorry about that.

    tODD 26, during the edits I messed up my reply to you. It’s not correct. If you’re really interested I can remake it to actually be comprehensible. I doubt it’s worth it though. 😀

  • Porcell

    WebMonk, having reacted similarly with sore or sensitive spots, I understand and appreciate your honesty.

  • Porcell

    WebMonk, having reacted similarly with sore or sensitive spots, I understand and appreciate your honesty.

  • WebMonk

    Hey! Don’t go all nice on me now! 😀

  • WebMonk

    Hey! Don’t go all nice on me now! 😀

  • Pete

    I’m gonna pile on. WebMonk – I’m no farmer, but my understanding is that NO bulls are cows and vice versa. I’m just sayin’.

  • Pete

    I’m gonna pile on. WebMonk – I’m no farmer, but my understanding is that NO bulls are cows and vice versa. I’m just sayin’.

  • WebMonk

    I have to agree with you Pete – that saying has always bugged me. I think that it’s mainly because “cattle” doesn’t flow as nicely as “cows”.

    And, if that bugs you, have you ever seen “Barnyard”? The bulls have udders!!!!!! *!!head explode!!* How could they be some abysmally ignorant about something like that?!?!?!?

  • WebMonk

    I have to agree with you Pete – that saying has always bugged me. I think that it’s mainly because “cattle” doesn’t flow as nicely as “cows”.

    And, if that bugs you, have you ever seen “Barnyard”? The bulls have udders!!!!!! *!!head explode!!* How could they be some abysmally ignorant about something like that?!?!?!?

  • Pete

    Sheesh!

  • Pete

    Sheesh!