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BME Professor Ke Cheng, who is also Professor of Regenerative Medicine at the College of Veterinary Medicine in NC State University, has recently published that ACE2 nanodecoys derived from human lung spheroid cells (LSCs) can bind and neutralize SARS-CoV-2 and protect the host lung cells from infection.

By mimicking the receptor that the virus binds to rather than targeting the virus itself, nanodecoy therapy could remain effective against emerging variants of the virus. “If you think of the spike protein as a key and the cell’s ACE2 receptor as a lock, then what we are doing with the nanodecoys is overwhelming the virus with fake locks so that it cannot find the ones that let it enter lung cells,” says Prof Ke Cheng. “The fake locks bind and trap the virus, preventing it from infecting cells and replicating, and the body’s immune system takes care of the rest.”

Three other benefits of the LSC nanodecoys are: they can be delivered non-invasively to the lungs via inhalation therapy; because they’re acellular, they can be easily preserved and remain stable longer, enabling off-the-shelf use; and LSCs are already in use in other clinical trials. To read the full publication, visit Nature Nanotechnology or the wraltechwire website here.

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