Characterization and applications of a Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus nucleoprotein-specific Affimer: Inhibitory effects in viral replication and development of colorimetric diagnostic tests

Beatriz Álvarez-Rodríguez, Christian Tiede, Alexis C. R. Hoste, Rebecca A. Surtees, Chi H. Trinh, Gillian S. Slack, John Chamberlain, Roger Hewson, Alba Fresco, Patricia Sastre, Darren C. Tomlinson, Paul A. Millner, Thomas A. Edwards, John N. Barr

Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever orthonairovirus (CCHFV) is one of the most widespread medically important arboviruses, causing human infections that result in mortality rates of up to 60%. The study by Beatriz Álvarez-Rodríguez et al describes a high-affinity small protein (Affimer-NP) that binds specifically to the nucleoprotein (NP) of CCHFV and interferes with the RNA-binding function of the NP by binding to a critical NP oligomerization interface, resulting in specific and dose-dependent inhibition of CCHFV gene expression in mammalian cells. The Affimer-NP was included in an enzyme-linked immunosorbent and a lateral flow assays, presenting the first point-of-care test able to detect CCHFV NP in spiked sera.

Published June 2020 in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases

       Beatriz 1

HONOURs

Host switching pathogens, infectious outbreaks and zoonosis; a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network.

This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 721367.