Benaroya Research Institute

Benaroya Research Institute is a Seattle, Washington non-profit organization that conducts medical research on many diseases and immune disorders, including autoimmune disease. It is affiliated with Virginia Mason Health System, and is located on the campus of Virginia Mason Medical Center.
Immune Genes Protect Cells from Ebola Virus and SARS-CoV-2🦠🔬🧫

Using a genetic screen called transposon-mediated gene activation, researchers from the Benaroya Research Institute searched for natural antiviral mechanisms within cultured human bone cancer cells. Transposons, mobile genetic elements found throughout the genome, can be added to cells to knock out genes they randomly insert into. The team integrated a promoter sequence into the transposons so that they would turn other genes on, while also knocking some genes out. After adding these transposons to human cells, the team introduced a virus engineered to express Ebola glycoprotein, killing most of the cells. Then, they discovered two genes crucial to the cells’ survival: NPC1 and CIITA.

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